Combustible Celluloid
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With: Jess Weixler, John Hensley, Josh Pais, Hale Appleman, Lenny von Dohlen, Vivienne Benesch, Ashley Springer, Julia Garro, Nicole Swahn, Adam Wagner, Hunter Ulvog, Ava Ryen Plumb, Trent Moore, Mike Yager
Written by: Mitchell Lichtenstein
Directed by: Mitchell Lichtenstein
MPAA Rating: R for disturbing sequences involving sexuality and violence, language and some drug use
Running Time: 88
Date: 01/19/2007

Teeth (2008)

3 Stars (out of 4)

Where the Tooth Lies

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

The "vagina dentata," or the toothed vagina that castrates men during sex, has been used symbolically for many horror films, but Mitchell Lichtenstein's Teeth is the first to use it literally. Teenage Dawn (Jess Weixler) preaches abstinence to her schoolmates, but when she falls in love for the first time, she discovers teeth where there shouldn't be any. The film's production values are non-existent, but the brave cast rises to the occasion. Interestingly, the film casts Dawn as the protagonist rather than as a monster. Writer/director Lichtenstein's low-budget effort concentrates on black comedy (Dawn's house lies in the shadow of a nuclear power plant) with the gore effects timed perfectly; there's an extra beat before the camera lowers to show the carnage.

DVD Details: The DVD from Dimension/Lionsgate comes with a low-key commentary track by director Lichtenstein (with lots of pauses), a 30-minute making of featurette, deleted scenes (4 minutes) and trailers. Best of all is the 30-second TV spot, which has the job of selling the film without mentioning what it's actually about! Teeth

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