On September 30th, the red carpet was rolled out at the Egyptian Theatre in Hollywood, CA to celebrate the work of Paul Schrader, best known as the legend who wrote the screenplay masterpieces to such classic films as Taxi Driver (1976) and Raging Bull (1980). But the night didn’t end with a peer into Schrader’s past as it was also the world premiere of his new film Dog Eat Dog.
Three ex-convicts are employed by a Cleveland mafia boss to baby-nap the child of a rival mafia member. Lacking paternal instinct and a solid sense of trust, the plan can only go south. Nevertheless, the trio will stop at nothing— including turning against each other— to stay the hell out of prison.
Based on the novel of the same name by Edward Bunker, the screenplay was written by up-and-coming writer Matthew Wilder, who has proven with this this film alone that he has the ability to tie excitement, comedy, and morale into what would otherwise be a dark story. This new mafia hit stars action film veterans Nicolas Cage (Kickass, Ghost Rider, Face/Off) and Willem Dafoe (Spider-Man, Bad Country, Daybreakers) as well as newcomer Christopher Matthew Cook (Mr. Right, The Walking Dead).
If you are expecting this film to resemble The Hangover with its Three-Men-and-a-Baby-gone-horribly-wrong plot, you will stand corrected as the baby acts as more of a mcguffin to steer the story in a different direction. While you will be delighted to see Nicolas Cage and his two co-stars in perhaps the funniest roles as of late, they also allow a humane side of their rough character roles to shine through. Along this acid trip of a story, the award-winning cast reveal the awful truth about the mob life that many films of that genre: it is not easy to leave a life of crime behind when you lack any other skills… like caring for a tiny human.
If you are looking for a violently fun film created by Hollywood’s cinematic masterminds, Dog Eat Dog has just completed its rounds through the film festival circuits and will be released on November 11th.