Writer/director Paul Schrader is famous for his screenwriting work with celebrated auteur Martin Scorcese on such contemporary classics as Taxi Driver, Raging Bull, The Last Temptation of Christ, and Bringing Out the Dead, and has been the seething, tortured voice to numerous critically acclaimed dramas in the past, including a string of directorial efforts starting with Blue Collar in 1978.
Even though his most recent creative outpouring, in the form of the Bret Easton Ellis-penned The Canyons from 2013, didn’t quite make as big of a splash as the revered director might have hoped for, his latest production Dog Eat Dog already sounds like a promising return to form. Based on the 1995 crime novel of the same by real life ex-con Edward Bunker, Schrader’s latest stars Nicolas Cage (Snowden) and Willem Dafoe (John Wick) as dueling mad men, though which of the two is crazier than the other is open for interpretation as seen in the film’s first official trailer.
In the footage featured above, Cage and Dafoe are on top form, with Cage playing the straight man to Dafoe’s feral mad dog. With plenty of unhinged sequences featuring a lot of hectic, slapdash mayhem throughout, Schrader’s dark comedy should manage to turn a few heads when it finally sees theatrical release after premiering earlier this year at Cannes Film Festival.
Speaking to IndieWire, Schrader certainly seems assured that his new movie won’t be as compromised by studio meddling as his last directorial outing, Dying of the Light, was. Referring to Dog Eat Dog as being “the film [he] wanted” to make, fans of Schrader’s past career highlights are likely in for a real treat once his new movie secures a distributor for domestic distribution.
Cage and Dafoe are always a joy to watch, and given how unrestrained the two lead performers have proven themselves to be in wildly imaginative roles in the past, their work together in Dog Eat Dog should provide another thrilling outlet for their respectively inimitable talents. Schrader may have been burned in recent years by a string of poorly received and or underdeveloped productions, but with his latest dark comedy crime drama the once universally celebrated filmmaker should be on track to deliver a true return to form hit, which should please moviegoers who still hold his greatest works in high regard.
Dog Eat Dog does not currently have a theatrical release date.
Source: Arclight Films