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USA 1996
Directed by
Todd Solondz
87 minutes
Rated M

Reviewed by
Bernard Hemingway
3.5 stars

Welcome To The Dollhouse

Winner of the Grand Jury Prize at the 1996 Sundance Film Festival, a surefire, albeit ironic, imprimatur of cultish hipness, Todd Solonz's story of adolescence awkwardness is an enjoyably offbeat comedy for those who can relate to its subjects although somewhat over-rated.

Heather Matarazzo is a winning loser as Dawn "Dogface" Weiner, a pre-teen female precursor to Jon Heder's Napoleon Dynamite. Solondz, who wrote, produced, and first-time directed this, is very good at relaying the excruciating purgatory of school years for terminally insecure, fish-out-of-water students, although the film tends to unravel in its latter stages with a rudimentary kidnapping sub-plot that feels extraneous to the overall mood of desperate mundanity which is the film's main frame of reference. 




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