Browse all reviews by letter     A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 0 - 9

aka - Mitt Liv Som Hund
Sweden 1985
Directed by
Lasse Hallstrom
97 minutes
Rated PG

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
3 stars

My Life As A Dog

Lasse Hallström’s popular coming-of-age film set in 1950s Sweden about 12-year-old Ingemar (Anton Glavelius) is a winsome work in the bittersweet comic vein.  Ingemar’s mother is dying of tuberculosis, his father seemingly long gone. To give her some relief from his mischevious and taxing ways he is shunted off to stay with his uncle who lives in the country.  Here Ingemar meets ready acceptance and makes his first tentative approach to the opposite sex.

My Life As A Dog is nicely crafted with an appealing retro 50s look and its whimsical style has its appeal, albeit limited,  As a portrait of early adolescence the film is a far cry from Truffaut’s  classic The Four Hundred Blows, being more an exercise in picturesque nostalgia for grown-ups than a child's eye view of the world, but Glavelius is a winning performer, his character given to philosophical reflection on his place in the bigger scheme of things, represented for him by the lot of Laika, the dog sent into space by the Soviets, never to return. Ingemar identifies with its melancholy fate (his own dog, Sikan, is taken away from him and put down with adult pragmatism) as he comes to term with his mother’s inevitable passing.

It is a slight film, idealized in a sentimental way and unchallenging and depending on your perspective that is either a good thing or not. 

Available from: Umbrella Entertainment




Want something different?

random vintage best worst