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Review: White God

White God is a movie like no other I've seen. It's being compared to everything from Lassie to The Birds, but in my eyes, it's much more similar to Bresson's Au Hasard Balthazar, a movie I just saw for the first time recently. A young girl and her pet are separated and their lives take turns that cause them to grow, in ways that are and aren't expected. Where White God separates itself, is that it's brutality seems to reflect no on Eastern Europe, but humanity itself. The metaphors are obvious, yet after reviewing some articles and message boards, it's clear they were missed on most Americans and maybe that is the point. It's so obvious, so laid out, that to have some visceral reaction, would be to admit ones naivety. I think this is the only area the film fails and not something I would have known, had I not researched the reactions post-viewing.

One thing that I was so happy I noticed early on and something I will share with everyone who has not seen the film, was the tails of the dogs in the earlier scenes. They were upright, even in some of the more painful scenes. This, gave me relief, because I knew the dogs were happy. The extras on the DVD go into great detail of how the dogs were trained, that will give most reviewers great relief and here's why. The movie is terribly upsetting. It's frighteningly so for animal lovers. I happened to watch the same day the Internet was abuzz with the death of Cecil the Lion. To say it didn't tear me apart would be a lie. I cried at three, maybe four different scenes and the ending nearly destroyed me.

I hate telling what films are about, so I'll leave it at this. Children look at their parents with respect, admiration and maybe even awe and dogs look at humans that same way, but there comes a point, where when nature's creatures are taken for granted, even abused, where they fight back. This is true with animals, with children and with all minority groups who grow tired of being neglected. There's a quote at the beginning that we should keep in our minds throughout the film and better yet, after it's over. We'll all be better for it, as will those who let themselves be taken by this film.

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