Cinema: A Bite As Tough As Its Bark

Dogs are humans' best friends in the superb Amores Perros

Director Alejandro Gonzalez Inarritu wanted a "big bang" at the center of his astonishing first feature, Amores Perros--something that would slap it into rambunctious life, rather as the bigger astronomical bang did our universe eons ago. He found it in the car crash that opens his movie--a sudden, sickening blend of violently torn metal, wailing sirens, desperate screams and blood--lots of blood.

The intricately structured screenplay by novelist Guillermo Arriaga keeps reverting, ever more intimately and horrifically, to that crash, not merely showing it as the major figures in three intertwined stories experience it but also letting us see their...

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