My Life as a Dog tells the story of Ingemar, a working-class twelve-year-old sent to live with his uncle in a country village when his mother falls ill. Once there, Ingemar finds refuge from his misfortunes and unexpected adventure with the help of the town’s warmhearted eccentrics.
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Surprisingly engaging coming of age story from director Lasse Hallstrom. The simple story is told with great depth and authenticity, rich characters and excellent authentic performances from its young cast. It manages to be gently emotional without ever getting too sentimental, and quirky and offbeat without going too far over the top.
A realistic portrait of a harsh childhood, and the good things and peoples that helped Ingemar cope with his problems. His thoughts of his mother and the dog portrays his coming-of-age and understanding.
Childhood is the happiest time of our lives simply because we still ignore what is wrong with the world and the people living in it. This film shows the moment when a kid begins to suffer at being beaten by tragedy (the loss of his mother and his dog) and disorientation (sexuality), but realizes is the time of shaping his own identity and character to endure.
Really nice, sweet, and nostalgic... I saw many connections to Cinema Paradiso, Life is Beautiful, Benjamin Button. But that's it... A happy idyllic childhood, for the most part. Definitely different from Ingmar Bergman's Sweden.