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Cast: Nicolas Cage, Willem Dafoe, Christopher Matthew Cook
A crew of ex-cons are hired by a Cleveland mafioso to kidnap the baby of a rival mobster.
"Dog eat Dog" tells the story of three ex-cons, Diesel, Mad Dog and Troy who have just gotten out of prison for doing time. After reuniting the three men take on a few small jobs but the problem is they are not making any real money so Troy decides to take a job that involves kidnaping a baby from a rival but when things go south they do their best to try and avoid getting caught and sent back to prison again.
"Dog Eat Dog" is an uneven crime drama that has some good action and drama as well as we follow these three ex-cons as the try to make enough cash to call it quits so they never go back to prison again. For the most part I really enjoyed the film, the story kept me interested and the well-developed characters kept me engaged because even though these were bad men I kind of felt for them a bit. The one major complaint I have about the film was it's last 10 minutes. I am not going to spoil it here but I will say it takes a strange turn and I just didn't feel it.
So what was the best part about the film you might ask? To me it was the characters and the cast that played them. Nicolas Cage gives his best performance in a long time as the leader, Troy. Christopher Matthew Cook is also excellent as Diesel and Willem Dafoe shines as Mad Dog, the loose canon of the trio. His character was the most fun and supplied a lot of the film's dark humor.
The film provides some social commentary and it doesn't lend itself to everyone so it is likely to have a love or hate relationship with its audience. The film spends its first 40 minutes letting us get to know our three main characters and setting up their back story and then around the 50 minute mark is when things really pick up.
In the end the film could have been better but I really enjoyed it even with an ending that I did not care for. I recommend the film for those that like an off the wall crime caper and to anyone that likes to watch actors excel at their craft because the three main actors here are all excellent in the film. "Dog Eat Dog" is available now on Blu-ray and DVD with Speacial Features that include:
Nicolas Cage Video Introduction for TIFF
BeyondFest Q&A with Nicolas Cage and Paul Schrader
Audio Commentary with Director Paul Schrader
I recommend seeing it even though I wasn't as pleased with it as I hoped I would be but it turned out to be an entertaining film none the less.
Released by RLJ Entertainment
*** Out Of *****