SXSW Film Review: ‘The Dog’


How often Hollywood embellishes. How rare then to find a documentary like “The Dog,” in which we discover that, if anything, Sidney Lumet’s “Dog Day Afternoon” left out much of the incredible story behind its 1972 hostage crisis, in which misguided romantic John Wojtowicz robbed a bank to finance his lover’s sex-change operation. Here, opening up to filmmakers Allison Berg and Frank Keraudren over the course of several years, the irrepressible stick-up man shares his side, serving as the unlikeliest of tour guides through the early gay rights movement in the process. This lively Drafthouse Films pickup should have a small, but wild ride in theaters and VOD.

Personified by Al Pacino in the 1975 film, Wojtowicz was never what one might consider leading-man material. A short, self-described “pervert,” the Brooklyn lothario compensated with charisma what he lacked in looks (and teeth). While married to his first wife, Wojtowicz sought sex…

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