The Power of the Dog

The Power of the Dog

The Power of the Dog

Benedict Cumberbatch, Kirsten Dunst, Jesse Plemons and Kodi Smit-McPhee (Slow West) star in this family feud drama based on Thomas Savage's novel, written and directed by Oscar winner Jane Campion (The Piano).

The year is 1925. The Burbank brothers (Cumberbatch & Plemons) are wealthy ranchers in Montana. At the Red Mill restaurant on their way to market, the brothers meet Rose (Dunst), the widowed proprietress, and her impressionable son Peter (Smit-McPhee). Phil (Cumberbatch) behaves so cruelly he drives them both to tears, reveling in their hurt and rousing his fellow cowhands to laughter - all except his brother George (Plemons), who comforts Rose then returns to marry her.

As Phil swings between fury and cunning, his taunting of Rose takes an eerie form - he hovers at the edges of her vision, whistling a tune she can no longer play. His mockery of her son is more overt, amplified by the cheering of Phil's cowhand disciples. Then Phil appears to take the boy under his wing. Is this latest gesture a softening that leaves Phil exposed, or a plot twisting further into menace?

Winner, Best Director (Campion) at the 2021 Venice Film Festival.
2021Rating: R13, Animal cruelty & content that may disturb126 minsUK
Drama

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The Power of the Dog / Reviews

Stuff

Stuff

A slow-burn and a film of many, many layers.

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Hollywood Reporter

Hollywood Reporter

Campion is in full control of her material, digging deep into the turbulent inner life of each of her characters with unerring subtlety.

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Variety

Variety

A socially conscious psychodrama that builds, over time, to a full boil.

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The Guardian

The Guardian

(A) beautiful, brawny western...

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RogerEbert.com

RogerEbert.com

A beautifully crafted movie with some individual scenes that are some of the tensest I've experienced in some time.

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Independent

Independent

The fascination of The Power of the Dog lies in its ambiguity and its depth of characterisation.

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Vanity Fair

Vanity Fair

Campion doesn’t drive any message or meaning home so much as she deftly, unnervingly captures a mood...

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Screen Daily

Screen Daily

(Campion's) most thoroughly conceived, consistently involving drama for years...

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Slant Magazine

Slant Magazine

Ripples underneath with a prickly modern sensibility.

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IGN

IGN

Twenty minutes could certainly have been knocked off the runtime, but it’s still a striking world to be swept up in.

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Wall Street Journal

Wall Street Journal

I thought it was impeccably crafted... gorgeously photographed and entirely -- although intentionally -- lacking in the verve and spontaneity that I cherish in movies above all else.

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The Globe and Mail

The Globe and Mail

Campion builds the tension slowly and emphatically, telegraphing the perils ahead. Yet when the two-edged climax comes it’s powerfully unexpected.

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Entertainment Weekly

Entertainment Weekly

A tricky, arresting neo-noir Western.

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Time Magazine

Time Magazine

This is a movie as big as the open sky, but one where human emotions are still distinctly visible, as fine and sharp as a blade of grass.

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Little White Lies

Little White Lies

The young Smit-McPhee acts Cumberbatch off the screen.

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The Power of the Dog / Trailers