8.0/10
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652 user 157 critic

Dogville (2003)

R | | Crime, Drama | 23 April 2004 (USA)
Trailer
1:58 | Trailer
A woman on the run from the mob is reluctantly accepted in a small Colorado community in exchange for labor, but when a search visits the town she finds out that their support has a price.

Director:

Lars von Trier

Writer:

Lars von Trier
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Popularity
2,066 ( 124)
21 wins & 32 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Nicole Kidman ... Grace Margaret Mulligan
Harriet Andersson ... Gloria
Lauren Bacall ... Ma Ginger
Jean-Marc Barr ... The Man with the Big Hat
Paul Bettany ... Tom Edison
Blair Brown ... Mrs. Henson
James Caan ... The Big Man
Patricia Clarkson ... Vera
Jeremy Davies ... Bill Henson
Ben Gazzara ... Jack McKay
Philip Baker Hall ... Tom Edison Sr.
Thom Hoffman ... Gangster
Siobhan Fallon Hogan ... Martha
John Hurt ... Narrator (voice)
Zeljko Ivanek ... Ben
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Storyline

Late one night, a beautiful and well-dressed young woman, Grace (Nicole Kidman), arrives in the mountainous old mining town of Dogville as a fugitive; following the sound of gunshots in the distance which have been heard by Tom (Paul Bettany), the self-appointed moral spokesman for the town. Persuaded by Tom, the town agree to hide Grace, and in return she freely helps the locals. However, when the Sheriff from a neighbouring town posts a Missing notice, advertising a reward for revealing her whereabouts, the townsfolk require a better deal from Grace, in return for their silence; and when the Sheriff returns some weeks later with a Wanted poster, even though the citizens know her to be innocent of the false charges against her, the town's sense of goodness takes a sinister turn and the price of Grace's freedom becomes a workload and treatment akin to that of a slave. But Grace has a deadly secret that the townsfolk will eventually encounter. Written by Neil Hillman.

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A quiet little town not far from here.

Genres:

Crime | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violence and sexual content | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Paul Bettany, who only took the part of Tom Edison after being convinced by friend Stellan Skarsgård, later called the making of this movie "hideous" and "a peculiarly unsatisfying experience, because Lars von Trier has no interest in you being any part of the cerebral process with him. You're absolutely his puppet." Despite still being a fan of von Trier's movies in general, Bettany has never watched this movie, and has no intention of ever doing so. See more »

Goofs

When Chuck takes the scarf from Grace's neck it shows up two shots later, then is gone again in next shot. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Narrator: This is the sad tale of the township of Dogville. Dogville was in the Rocky Mountains in the US of A, up here where the road came to its definitive end, near the entrance to the old abandoned silver mine. The residents of Dogville were good honest folks, and they liked their township. And while a sentimental soul from the East Coast had once dubbed their main street Elm Street, though no elm had ever cast its shadow in Dogville, they saw no reason to change anything. Most of the ...
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Crazy Credits

An official Danish, Swedish, British, French, German and Dutch co-production in accordance with the 1992 European Convention on Cinematographic Co-Production. See more »

Alternate Versions

To fit the needs of some local distributors, in Italy among others, assistant director Anders Refn cut a version of Dogville which is about 45 minutes shorter than the original. The version was accepted and approved by director Lars von Trier. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Brows Held High: Antichrist (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

America the Beautiful
(uncredited)
Lyrics by Katharine Lee Bates
Music by Samuel A. Ward
[Sung by residents of Dogville on July 4th]
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User Reviews

Not as anti-American as you might think.
24 October 2004 | by joeh-7See all my reviews

Dogville is long, and if you don't have the patience for a slow ramp-up of tension, it'll turn you right off. There are a couple story devices Von Trier uses that really bugged me, and I almost shut it off once. I'm glad I stuck with him, though, because he really took it somewhere and I came away really enjoying the experience..

Critics who hated Dogville talk about it's hamhanded anti-American slant (Lars von Trier refuses ever to set foot in that country). I knew nothing about this film or Von Trier before seeing it and I have to say I entirely missed the anti-America thing until the backcredits. Don't get me wrong, there are several scenes that make commentary about rampant nationalism, prejudice towards immigrants and small town xenophobia, but those comments could be made about the zealous in ANY region of ANY nation at ANY time.

If we are to criticize 21-st Century America, and there are plenty of reasons to criticize it, we must also criticize other peoples and governments who are screwing up royally. I think if Dogville has a point to make to America, its not that it is uniquely problematic, but that it is as problematic as any other nation. Where on this planet can you NOT find a group of people who think:

THE WORLD WOULD BE A BETTER PLACE IF EVERYONE WAS JUST LIKE US.

That statement is the kernel of failure for every major conqueror and every major religion in history and it portends the long, inevitable swirl down the toilet and the people who want you toppled have only to sit back and watch you do it to yourself.

America is a great nation, with a lot of culture, history and art to be proud of, and maybe that's why modern artists feel the need to make pieces like Dogville. To remind America that, as great as it is, it's still a nation of crying, barfing, excreting, whining, greedy, worried, scared mouths to feed, just like the rest of us -- no better or worse.

That's all I think Dogville does as an anti-American piece. If Von Trier meant to just poo on America, he missed his mark and ended up making a point about all of us. Regardless, he among many others wants America to change it's mind about itself, and it doesn't matter if he hates it or loves it. Much more interesting to me is the blatantly obvious point Dogville makes -- to what point do you forgive the transgressions upon you by others who may be less fortunate but are nonetheless doing wrong? It sure made me take a look at my own pacifism.

Nicole Kidman was brilliant, as was Paul Bettany and the simpler townsfolk who will play so skillfully with your emotions. It seems I've been flooded with Kidman movies regularly for a couple weeks now and this is my favourite of her performances.

Good film, Dogville.


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Details

Official Sites:

Official site [Spain]

Language:

English

Release Date:

23 April 2004 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Film 'Dogville' as Told in Nine Chapters and a Prologue See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$88,855, 28 March 2004

Gross USA:

$1,535,286

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$16,689,283
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Black and White (still photographs)| Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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