Over the years, Netflix has surely become a go-to streaming service for movie buffs.
The platform has released uncompromising masterpieces from visionary filmmakers such as Alfonso Cuaron, Martin Scorsese, Charlie Kaufman, The Safdie Brothers and beyond.
One of the most recent and acclaimed works to capture attention is The Power of the Dog.
It is directed by Jane Campion, who is known for making “the greatest directors of all time” and is revered for films such as An angel at my table and Le Piano.
Benedict Cumberbatch stars in this Western drama the role of Phil Burbank, a wealthy ranch owner. It’s a tale rich in themes, but in the end the audience got preoccupied with a question or two. First off, how does Phil die in The Power of the Dog?
ATTENTION: THE POWER OF SPOILERS FOR DOGS
How does Phil die in The Power of the Dog?
Phil falls ill and it is later revealed that he probably died from anthrax poisoning.
Reflecting on the larger story of the film and what led to his death, Phil is initially hostile towards Rose’s son Peter, as he exhibits what Phil believes to be effeminate traits.
However, he gradually begins to develop a friendship with him and reveals more about his life, especially his admiration for his late mentor, Henry.
One night, Phil is working on a lasso in the barn and he tells Peter about a memory of him and Henry having to cuddle together to warm up in extreme weather conditions. When Peter asks Phil if they were naked, he doesn’t answer.
His silence suggests they were naked and leads the public to believe that Phil suppressed his homosexuality.
It is the next day that George checks in on an absent Phil, who is confined to his bed and gripped by illness.
Although he wanted to finish Peter’s lasso, he was naturally rushed to the hospital and later died. The cause of death is confirmed at his funeral and although anthrax is used on the ranch, it is established that Phil’s death is still suspect. he was still incredibly careful.
Did Peter kill Phil in Power of the Dog?
It is strongly implied that Peter was the one who poisoned Phil with anthrax.
The end of the film finds him at home reading the Bible verse Psalm 22:20, from which the film borrows its name: “Deliver my soul from the sword; my darling of the power of the dog.
Jane Campion explained that the title is sort of a warning: “The power of the dog is all those cravings, all these deep and uncontrollable cravings that can come and destroy us, you know?
We see Peter, gloved, put the lasso under his bed and he watches his mother – now sober – hug his stepfather George. He smiles.
This ending suggests that Peter poisoned Phil in order to save his mother, who had resorted to heavy drinking due to the couple’s close relationship.
What’s next for Jane Campion?
In a conversation with The Hollywood Reporter, Jane Campion was asked if she had another project in mind:
“No. The only thing I know is the next thing I’m going to do is start a pop-up film school in New Zealand. I know people are working on the environment, but I’m working on it. intellectual environment, learning environment and educational environment.
She added, “I want it to be free. It’s really important to me that people have the opportunity to be filmmakers without having rich parents.
The Power of the Dog is now streaming on Netflix.
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