Master misanthrope Todd Solondz has made a career with films that luxuriate in dysfunction and despair yet somehow remain engaging. He’s at it again in “Wiener-Dog,” and even the presence of an adorable dachshund cannot save the humans around him from their hopelessness.
The conceit of his latest exercise in droll negativity is presenting the misery from the viewpoint of the cute dog, who finds herself being herded from owner to owner, each with their own distinct shades of the pathetic.
What makes this watchable is that Solondz (“Welcome to the Dollhouse,” “Happiness”) knows how to create vivid characters, even when all of them seem to be painfully resigned to the meaningless of life. The ensemble cast here is uniformly excellent, and knows what to do with Solondz’s playful impudence.
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