Dolls (2002)

Master filmmaker Takeshi Kitano returns behind the camera for the first time since his indifferently received English-language effort Brother (2000) with this operatic tale of lost love. Dolls takes puppeteering as its overriding motif --… More

Directed By:
Rated: Unrated
Running Time:
Release Date: September 5, 2002
DVD Release Date: March 8, 2005
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Critic Score: 75% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
G. Allen Johnson
San Francisco Chronicle

The cinematography is colorful and sweeping, the editing and storytelling simple and pure.

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Michael Wilmington
Chicago Tribune

A work both rigorously stylized and deeply personal.

Christopher Machell

Kitano's sensibilities as a blackly-comic director serve the film well

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Ty Burr
Boston Globe

It's all as passionate, refined, and insistently sad as Bunraku puppetry itself.

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John Hartl
Seattle Times

Devoted fans of Kitano will want to see Dolls. Others may be put off by the dirgelike pace (Kitano takes full credit for the editing) and a ghastly, mood-destroying pop-music number performed by Fukada.

Luke Goodsell
Empire Magazine Australasia

There's a clinical stillness to the way Kitano suggests the inevitability of loss, his always-arresting visuals and the disembodied, ambient soundtrack framing the characters at a quizzical distance.

Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

Dolls isn't a film for everybody, especially the impatient, but Kitano does succeed, I think, in drawing us into his tempo and his world, and slowing us down into the sadness of his characters.

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Carina Chocano
Los Angeles Times

The movie's pace is appropriate to its mood, which is crisp, melancholy and gently cruel.

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Jeffrey M. Anderson
Combustible Celluloid

The stories have a fateful, lonely feel, like one of Wong Kar-wai's missed connections. Yet their tragic timelessness, and the lovely, aching pace at which they are told, bring them to a level of extraordinary beauty.

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More reviews for Dolls

Flixster Audience Score: 88% Flixster User Reviews
Steven Carrier
When I viewed Takeshi Kitano's "Dolls" I was told I would either love or hate the film. In retrospect, neither of those emotions crossed my mind.… More
Jesse Ortega
You know usually I'm very open towards these kinds of films, what I mean by that is that I'm usually open when filmmakers try new things, to broaden… More
El Hombre Invisible
Takeshi Kitano brings us three stories about the decisions we make that affect our whole lives. The key element here is that we sometimes make the wrong… More
Lesley N
I nearly stopped watching this in the first ten minutes, but luckily once the Japanese dolls were put away, it became more of a Kitano film. Three stories… More
Tsubaki Sanjuro
Drags a bit in some parts, yet Kitano knows how to keep things simple and direct to the point.
Daisy Maduro
When I started to watch Dolls, in the first 10 minutes I wanted to close it down, was for me an odd movie and way too slow.But being a movie of Kitano I wanted… More