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Category:    Home > Reviews > Comedy > Foreign > Children > Poland > The Big Animal (Duze Zwierze/Milestone DVD)

The Big Animal (Duze Zwierze)


Picture: C†††† Sound: C+†††† Extras: C+†††† Film: B-



When noted directors like Krzysztof Kieslowski (Three Colors Trilogy, Decalogue) leaves us, there is always a rush to see and hear all the films that artist was involved in.He wrote The Big Animal (Duze Zwierze) and it is a charming, funny story.Jerry Stuhr (a former actor for Kieslowski) would direct this version that was released in 2000 and it could maybe become a kind of childrenís classic like The Red Balloon, though this has different appeals as well and may not be of all youngsters.


The story evolves around a small Polish town (where this was filmed) has Stuhr also playing the man who heads a family suddenly finding themselves in possession of a camel.All camel jokes aside, he ands his wife deiced they want to keep and take care of the newfound big pet, but everyone else suddenly wants the cherished four-legger for all the wrong reasons and it brings out the worse in everyone around.Of course, Poland has other problems (anti-Semitism, et al) and none of that applies here, but it becomes a serio-comic look at human nature that just sustains itself for 72 minutes.


The letterboxed 1.85 X 1 image was shot in black and white by Pawel Edelman, whose work includes Roman Polanskiís The Pianist, Taylor Hackfordís Ray (reviewed on HD-DVD elsewhere on this site) and the recent remake of All The Kingís Men.Though not the think black and white of the past (silver content being the factor), this is from a good-looking print, but is softer than expected.The Dolby Digital 2.0 Stereo has no surrounds, but is still good.Extras include the Milestone press kit, U.S. trailer, half-hour interview piece with the filmmakers and a making of featurette.



-†† Nicholas Sheffo


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