Hounddog (2008)

A precocious but troubled young girl living in 1950s-era Alabama seeks solace in the music of Elvis Presley in director Deborah Kampmeier's controversial tale of childhood trauma and musical healing. War of the Worlds star Dakota… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: September 19, 2008
DVD Release Date: March 10, 2009
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Critic Score: 15% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Despite a noble effort from Dakota Fanning, Hounddog is overwrought, cliche-ridden and downright exploitative.

Steven Winn
San Francisco Chronicle

The whole distasteful mess is sunk up to its neck in a brew of Southern Gothic atmosphere and hocus-pocus sentimentality.

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David Hiltbrand
Philadelphia Inquirer

A slow procession of degradation and suffering, Hounddog is like a tall glass of bitter iced tea.

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Michael Sragow
Baltimore Sun

Hounddog boasts a distinctive wood-and-emerald look and several crackerjack performances.

Michael Phillips
Chicago Tribune

Only Fanning's emotional honesty makes Hounddog watchable.

Amy Nicholson
I.E. Weekly

The only lesson is that if you're a child of the south, you better get yourself adopted by Yankees.

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Josh Larsen

...as discomfiting as you've heard, yet there is one moment near the end that nearly saves it.

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Peter Travers
Rolling Stone

If there's a Southern-gothic clichÚ (oh, those snakes!) that writer-director Deborah Kampmeier misses, I don't know it.

Stephen Whitty
Newark Star-Ledger

The latest wallow in regional cliche and stereotype.

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Brian Orndorf

Fanning resembles an acting robot: stick a quarter in her head and she'll dial up any reaction in the book, absent the needed gravitas.

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More reviews for Hounddog

Flixster Audience Score: 48% Flixster User Reviews
Kevin M. Williams
Dakota Fanning's luminescent performance grounds this lonely, sordid trip to the rural 1950s South enough to overcome the numerous and cliched stereotypes… More
Leigh Ryan
Very slow, but it was worth a watch. Very odd storyline but brought to life as best as could be. The last 25 minutes or so is the best part of the film.
Jim Hunter
A young girl grows up in the South with her damaged father, dysfunctional grandmother, and a looming sexuality. I think this film gets a star knocked off as a… More
Luke Baldock
Dakota Fanning gives her best performance to date. She perfectly captures both her youthful innocence, and her natural maturity that puts her above most child… More
Nicki Marie
Have been wanting to see this for ages, but doesn't seem to be getting released over here (anytime soon, anyhow), so ended up ordering the DVD from the US.… More
William Dunmyer
[size=3]With better direction, "Hounddog" could have been a major film. It had many core elements that were so right, including a stellar cast led by… More

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