Dennis is a bodybuilder with an impressive physique, but due to him being very shy and introverted, he is not really successful in his efforts to get a girlfriend in his hometown. After he sees his oncle marry a woman from Thailand, he organizes a trip to Thailand searching for love, female affection and a human connection. Very beautiful and real portrait of a very sweet man imprisoned by his own inhibition.
So much faux-documentary and yet, so good. What could have been easy awkward situation comedy, is done with found poetry. The movie unfolds as though there wasn't a script and finding that small moments have the most weight. Watching the lead character's struggles reminds us that the greatest accomplishments (such as overcoming your overbearing mother) are done with kindness and not malice! Beautiful!
Two striking things about this film, among others. An improbable couple is formed, a hulkish figure from the ranks of hypermasculinity meets a tiny widow from the country where many females are swept away from their innocence and cast into the tentacles of prostitution and slavery. And the middle aged western men that seek to acquire wives are strangely a vision of how tech made us closer and yet kept us far away.
Winner of the best director award at Sundance this year, Teddy Bear is your usual son-under-the-thumb-of-mum story except this time he is a gigantic ageing real-life bodybuilder called 'Dennis'. It's a lovely and delicate tale of identity/masculinity and overcoming ones obstacles be they physical or mental. A great example of low-budget filmmaking. 4 stars
Dennis is so cute and shy that right from the start you root for him, hoping that he will be able to break free from his mother's emotional oppression. The film itself is very 'nordic' and restrained, only the mother loses her temper near the end. It's not particularly memorable but it kind of made me wanna go to Thailand someday (and not for the prostitutes...!)