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Culture Maven review: "The Power of the Dog"


C D K · Culture Maven on Film: "The Power Of Dog"

Film Review & Podcast by c d kaplan

It has simply been too long since we seen any new film from Jane Campion.

More than a decade.

“The Power of the Dog” is such a well designed and crafted drama, it’s been worth the wait.

Benedict Cumberbatch and Jesse Plemons play two very different brothers, who jointly own and live together in a Victorian manse on a sprawling cattle ranch in Montana in the 1920s.

Plemons, quiet and decent, takes a bride, Kirsten Dunst. Who moves in, along with her late teen son, played by Kodi Smit-McPhee.

Cumberbatch’s at first inexplicable anger and mockery of all around him increases with their presence, causing a tense situation in which he thrives. But the others do not.

The visually exquisite film reveals slowly and patiently the genesis of Cumberbatch’s character Phil’s nastiness.

The ending will probably shock. But is true to what proceeds.

The film played at Speed Cinema, but is now gone. Fortunately, it can be streamed on Netflix.

For more on “The Power of the Dog,” easily one of my favorite and best films of 2021, listen to my podcast above.

Mel is the WFPK morning host. Email Mel at mfisher@lpm.org.

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