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The Power of the Dog: Benedict Cumberbatch and Kodi Smit-McPhee open up about their characters

The Doctor Strange actor plays a macho ranch owner in the movie

Alfred Francis
Sep 14, 2021
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Actor Benedict Cumberbatch shared some tidbits about his character in his upcoming movie The Power of the Dog. The movie is written and directed by Jane Campione and deals with the theme of ‘struggling with sexuality’.

The movie has Benedict play the role of Phil Burbank, a charismatic yet powerful rancher who is capable of inspiring love and fear at the same time. The story narrates his power struggle with his brother Geroge Burbank, played by Jesse Plemons. The conflict arises when George returns home with his new wife Rose Gordon and her son Peter Gordon who upsets the power balance between the siblings. This makes Phil Burbank view George and his family as outsiders, coming to take over his territory and he starts to torment them. But then, he finds love in this conflict and the rest of the movie chronicles his struggle with his own sexuality.

Speaking to Variety about his character Phil Burbank, the actor said, “He’s a man in great pain. He’s so lost in his masculinity, in his veneer of masculinity.” The actor also said that it is one of the factors that attracted him to take on this role with a negative shade.

Meanwhile, actor Kodi Smit, famous for his role as Nightcrawler in the X-Men franchise, will play Peter Gordon. Talking about his character, Kodi commented, “Playing Peter gave me an opportunity to own myself and own the things that maybe are not accepted in society and that I’ve experienced myself, and so does my character.”

The is based on a novel by Thomas Savage of the same name and is expected to attract literary audiences to the theatres. The movie had its world premiere at the 78th Venice International Film Festival on September 2, 2021, where Campion won the Silver Lion for Best Direction.

The film is scheduled to have a limited release on November 17, before streaming on Netflix from December 1.

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