Man Bites Dog
Man Bites Dog is a dark, illogically bizarre, fictional mokumentary. A Belgium black-and-white piece, the film includes an amateur film crew that decides to track the life of Benoît Poelvoorde, a devout serial-killer. Bold and infamous, Benoît has no qualms about sharing his most intimate, ruthless acts in front of the camera. He therefore allows the crew to follow him every time he decides to compose a human massacre. Benoît points out that his favourite victim is the mailmen, but he doesn’t mind ‘taking care’ of old hags and children every now and then either. Inhuman murders are abruptly intermingled with visuals of beautiful, old architecture, while classical instrumental music seeps into the background; each lending a jarring yet alarmingly poetic tone to the film.
Initially, the crew stands outside the circumference of Benoît’s bloody creations – filming each murder as outsiders, observers. Soon however, a friendly (and ironically human) relationship is built between the crew and him. As the film unfolds, the bond strengthens, so much so that the team begins to ‘assist’ the psychotic killings – now as insiders, participators. The structure therefore provides dual perspectives to the audience, each scene equipped with matter that stuns and amazes. An experimental drama, it takes a while to get attuned to the film’s rhythmic murders, but if you have a strong stomach and are a fan of blood and gore, this might just be perfect weekend entertainer!_
By: Radhika Iyengar