Vagina dentata is really fun to say!

teeth-movie-poster.jpgI’m pretty glad I decided to see the movie Teeth in the theater. This is a movie to watch in a big group. With anything this absurd, this completely over the line, other people’s reactions are what make the experience. And there were some very strong reactions happening around me.

Teeth is really more of an extremely dark comedy, with the slightest bit of horror influence, than the full-on horror film the marketing campaign attempts to convince people it is. The main character, with her less-than-convenient anatomical anomaly, moves through a world in which her dad is the only guy around who isn’t a deviant sexual predator. So, unlike in a real horror movie, everyone who meets a horrific fate pretty much already had it coming to them. It makes things slightly easier to watch. Slightly.

Jess Weixler is the force that makes this movie work. She plays Dawn, a youth group leading champion of abstinence, with all the earnestness of a typical horror movie heroic virgin, but with just a hint of Jan Brady mania and a touch of influence from the Amanda Bynes school of how to make something funny with only a crazed facial expression. The overall effect is one that lets the audience laugh their way through such grotesque set-ups as watching Dawn clamp down on her skeezy gynecologist’s wandering fingers and then find herself unable to let go. Which is pretty much the least severe thing that happens to any of her victims.

So yes, the movie is legitimately funny, if you can appreciate this sort of black humor, and overall it’s very well made. It’s also much more graphically gory than I was expecting. I spent a fair portion of the time watching through my fingers, or not watching at all. Judging from the squirming, shrieking, groaning and Oh-my-God-ing going on around me, everyone else in the theater felt the same way. If you watch this movie, you will see more than one severed male body part. It’s not pretty. But I do find myself wanting to defend the movie for going that far, because to me if you’re going to tackle a subject like this, you better go as far with it as you can. If the movie wasn’t completely over the top, completely extreme, it wouldn’t be worth your time. And I’m going to make the judgment that it’s worth your time. If you’re not the sort who has nightmares.


3 Responses to “Vagina dentata is really fun to say!”

  1. 1 patty February 20, 2008 at 12:06 pm

    brandi, noooooooooo!!! you gave away too much!

    nate, if you read this, it’s not that gory. just ridiculous (ridickulous?). so funny!

  2. 2 celeberrimous February 20, 2008 at 12:25 pm

    Yes, it’s gory in a funny and ridiculous way! Did I not make that clear? It was obvious that the majority of the people in the theater thought the movie was hilarious. I don’t think anyone’s going to get permanent damage or anything like that.

  3. 3 patty February 20, 2008 at 2:07 pm

    “is it even worth it?”


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Downton Gabby: podcasting about Downton Abbey from a funny, foul-mouthed, feminist perspective

Quick Lit: reading one short story a day in 2015

Grand Dames: collecting sundry achievements of admirable women

The MacGuffin: archive of my days as a film critic

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