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Stray Dogs2013

  • 4.0
In the newest film from Tsai Ming-liang, a single father makes his meager living holding up an advertising placard on a traffic island in the middle of a busy highway. His children wait out their days in supermarkets before they eat with their father and go to sleep in an abandoned building. As the father starts to come apart, a woman in the supermarket takes the children under her wing. There are real stray dogs to be fed in Tsai's everyday apocalypse, but the title also refers to its principal characters, living the cruelest of existences on the ragged edges of the modern world. STRAY DOGS is many things at once: minimal in its narrative content and syntax, as visually powerful as it is emotionally overwhelming, and bracingly pure in both its anger and its compassion. One of the finest works of an extraordinary artist.

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2 members like this review

Each shot/scene stands on its own as a story that both reveals and conceals. At times it could almost be a documentary (an entire meal consumed; rituals of washing and cleaning) but a documentary would have some kind of explanation of why these events take place and how they fit into a larger world. Instead these events are narrated to us, asking us to think about what is told and how. The first shot of the film prepares everything that follows.

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Member Reviews (3)

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top reviewer

Each shot/scene stands on its own as a story that both reveals and conceals. At times it could almost be a documentary (an entire meal consumed; rituals of washing and cleaning) but a documentary would have some kind of explanation of why these events take place and how they fit into a larger world. Instead these events are narrated to us, asking us to think about what is told and how. The first shot of the film prepares everything that follows.

2 members like this review

Brutal, beautiful, Tsai's best work since I Don't Want to Sleep Alone(2006). Kang-sheng Lee is wonderful as usual. Simultaneously distant but warm, engaging yet aloof. The three headed DP's Tsai employed for this film work perfectly together: Pen-Jung Liao, Ching-Hsin Lu and Wen Zhong Sung. The most visually potent of anything in Tsai's oeuvr ..

2 members like this review
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probably a 10_i love this film_everything about it_magic poetry mystery beauty tears & time_love the kids the dad the woman the dogs the wall the mystery the time_it's all totally amazing and beautiful it barely moves_but it does at a magic pace_really a powerful film_every shot is beautiful XXXXXXXXX