Teeth (2007)

Warning: The following post contains numerous references to the male and female anatomy. If you haven't heard about the birds and the bees yet, I suggest clicking on another review.

Are you a parent of a teenage son? Do you live in worry that he will come home one day with the news that he has gotten a girl pregnant after an irresponsible night? Do you wish there was a way to somehow keep your son from making this stupid mistake? Well I have good news for you. A movie has been released that serves as the most potent anti-sex film since the dawn of time. I am talking about Teeth, a film that for some reason won an award at the Sundance Film Festival, and just so happens to have ended up on my friend's television screen when I went to his house. If you have a friend or if you are a person who keeps track of recent releases of independent films, you may have heard of this film as "the one with the girl who's got teeth in her danger zone". Well yes, that is essentially what the film is about. Teeth is the gag inducing tale of Dawn O'Keefe (Jess Weixler), a teenage girl who strongly advocates abstinence before marriage. After becoming the object of attraction for fellow abstainer Toby (Hale Appleman), Dawn discovers that she isn't like normal girls. When Toby attempts to take advantage of her (some nice guy he turned out to be right?), the event is short lived as his penis soon becomes a thing of the past. How could this have happened? You guessed it. Teeth in the va-j-j. Horrified by herself (as she should be), Dawn researches her unusual condition and discovers she has Vagina Dentata, a mythical affliction that seems to have been brought to reality through her body. Although this could possibly make for an effective scary story around a campfire, turning this plot into a feature film was a huge mistake. Then again, voluntarily watching it was a huge mistake on my part.

I saw Teeth a while ago, but am only just writing about it because I tried so desperately to remove it from my memory. I came to the decision that instead of keeping it locked away, I should share with the world the atrocities of this film, so that they could avoid the mistake that I was so foolish to make. I'm sure the makers of Teeth didn't plan on making a film that's sole purpose was to scare the sex drive out of teenage boys, but ultimately that's what they got. Being a teenage boy myself, it took me a day and a half to rationalize that it was just a movie. Looking back I feel silly that I was even affected at all. But in all seriousness, Teeth does not work as anything more than a film preaching abstinence. Even in that respect, it doesn't succeed. Like I said, it took me only a day and a half to get over it. I haven't had sex, but if my girlfriend offered it to me I wouldn't say "No, first I want you to get checked for Vagina Dentata". Teeth also fails as an amusing splatstick film, because I couldn't really find the comedy in watching multiple penises get removed. It just didn't sit right with me. I've grown fond of having a penis, and the thought of it having ripped away makes me very sad. I guess you could say if somebody tried to take it away, I'd have quite the BONE to pick with them =D....no? Nothing? Ok moving on. Director Mitchell Lichtenstein, who has done practically nothing in the past, should never be allowed to work again after bringing us this vile, poorly filmed squalor. Not to mention the most obnoxious and overly dramatic score since There Will Be Blood (I'd give There Will Be Blood a 9 instead of a 10 only because of the score, but that's a different review). In some particularly ugly shots (including the opening shot of the film), Lichtenstein shows a landscape view of the bright and sunny town that the film takes place in. Technicolor that is reminiscent of the early Batman television series makes this shot an eye sore, and it foreshadows the rest of the film as being a terrible viewing experience.

If you are going to be physically and emotionally sickened by a film, one should hope that there were some redeeming qualities that kept you interested. Teeth offers you nothing, and on top of that nothing shows you graphic scenes of penal amputation. Makes for one hell of a movie right!? Wrong. Jess Weixler is annoying and sometimes unwatchable as the girl with the devil's vagina, Dawn. Even though her character is reasonably in hysterics for a lot of the film, she still managed to over-act and sometimes even under-act. Never did Weixler hit the nail on the head. No supporting performances give Teeth an extra boost, not even John Hensley's performance as Dawn's drug taking, sex having, deeply disturbed step brother Brad. The relationship between Dawn and Brad had potential to be intriguing and memorable but instead falls flat on its back. The resolution between the two is predictable and altogether unsatisfying. You see what is about to happen from a mile away and when it is finally done you are left scratching your head thinking, "That's it? I really watched that entire movie just so I can see something that I totally expected to happen like an hour ago? I'm gonna go throw up". Now I didn't throw up when I finished the film, but if they had some kind of memory eraser that I could take to erase it from my head that would be swell. If you know any good ways to remove something from your memory without damaging everything else in your head just leave a comment.

Now underneath the repulsive visuals displayed in Teeth, there lies the foundation of any film, and that is the script. The director Mitchell Lichtenstein also wrote the screenplay for the film, and I must say this man really does not have any talent. He managed to take a completely original idea (something that is very rare in today's movies) and drive it so far into the ground that the heat from the earth's core melted it. Lichtenstein could not decide whether to make his film heavy on the horror and light on comedy or the other way around. Scenes flip flop between scary and comical, and sometimes the scary scenes are more laugh producing than the funny ones. Either way, I didn't find the film to be funny at all. The subject matter is a bit too grotesque to be funny. Beneath his sequences of horror and violence, there is meant to be a feeling of female empowerment delivered by Dawn, who can somewhat be classified as a hero given the film's ending. The idea that this girl is using her "gift" to punish sex driven men (albeit by having sex with them) probably would give a woman a sense of pride and the feeling that she can overcome the oppression of any man. WELL I'M NOT A WOMAN! I fail to see the pride one can gain from having teeth in her vagina! And as a boy, I learned absolutely nothing from this film. The only possible message could have been to not be so hasty with who you become intimate with. But all I learned was to always check the quality of the turf before you step out on the field.

Teeth runs at the longest 94 minutes you will ever endure, and shows you no mercy along the way. I had a feeling going in that I wouldn't enjoy this film, and I was dead right. Perhaps if the film was not as graphic it would have been easier to watch. But the pervasive obscenity of the amputation scenes were unnecessary and in no way entertaining. Maybe if you are a woman you can watch this film and laugh and say "Ha! Take that you stupid man! Chicks rule! Girl power, woohoo!" But other than that, there is nothing that can come from this film except misery and unhappiness. Everybody, especially men, should run away from this film at all costs. My rating (1/10)


  1. What a sick, twisted, demented film...

    Great site! I look forward to reading more reviews! :)

  2. yay for being mentioned in your review. <3

    and *shudder* at movie

    "I've grown fond of having a penis..."
    ~Nicholas DeNitto

    that's my new favorite quote for you.

  3. Nick, rarely has reading a review of yours been so scarring/enjoyable. I apologize profusely for allowing Amy and Jay to pick that movie. I'll make it up to you someday. :)

    Hi Diana!

  4. This movie sounds horrifying, i didnt know this kind of stuff is allowed in American cinema... we've come a long way from its a wonderful life

  5. Yo this movie was weird, but not as weird as Billy Idol music videos. I was watching one the other day and i went on a trip. I woke up at newark airport with luggage and two tickets to Lithiuania in my pocket. Also my boxers were nowhere to be found.


Movies given a 10/10

  • Milk
  • In Bruges
  • Slumdog Millionaire
  • The Dark Knight
  • Iron Man
  • No Country For Old Men
  • The Shining
  • A Clockwork Orange