‘It’s what’s inside that counts’
Teeth is a 2007 American comedy horror film written and directed by Mitchell Lichtenstein, about a teenage girl who has teeth in her vagina.
Dawn O’Keefe (Jess Weixler) is a teenage spokesperson for a Christian abstinence group called The Promise. She attends groups with her two friends, Alisha (Julia Garro) and Phil (Adam Wagner).
One evening after giving a speech about the purity ring worn by members of the group, she is introduced to Tobey (Hale Appleman) and finds him attractive. The four begin going out as a group.
Dawn has fantasies about marrying Tobey, although after acknowledging the attraction they agree that they cannot spend time together. Soon after they give in and meet at a local swimming hole.
After swimming together, they go into a cave to get warm and begin kissing. Dawn gets uncomfortable and tries to get them to go back. Tobey then attempts to force sex on Dawn, who panics and tries to push him off. Tobey becomes aggressive and shakes Dawn, resulting in her smacking her head on the ground.
While she is recovering from disorientation, Tobey takes this as his chance to begin carnally assaulting her. Dawn fights back and inadvertently bites off his penis with her vagina. Horrified, he stumbles away and she flees the scene…
” …this is an impressive feature film debut from Mitchell Lichtenstein and it’s nice to see a return to “body horror”. The movie certainly isn’t for everyone, and gorehounds will be disappointed. But, for those looking for something which lies between the arthouse and the grindhouse, then Teeth is something to chew on.” DVD Sleuth
“Importantly, it is all played absolutely straight, and Weixler resists any temptation to camp it up. Hidden socio-sexual meanings are there in plenty, but as Sigmund Freud might have said: sometimes a cigar is just a cigar and sometimes a hideously severed penis is just a hideously severed penis. Good clean fun.” The Guardian
“Kudos to Lichtenstein for the sheer audacity of his premise; it’s just a shame that he never seems to have figured out exactly what he wants to do with it: The film’s mix of cheap gags, macabre coming-of-age story, social satire and Cronenbergian body horror is apparently meant to gel into black comedy, but it never quite does.” TV Guide
“Yanking the ancient myth of vagina dentata up to the present day in a treatment combining outright gore, social satire and freakish comedy, Teeth bites off more than it can chew. A game, disarming lead performance from Jess Weixler, who won a jury acting prize at Sundance, goes some way toward making palatable this mish-mash.” Variety
“What I dug about this movie is that it didn’t go for any cheap exploitation shocks. Nor did it try to be a cheesy After School Special […] Director Mitchell Lichtenstein actually depicted high school life with a keen eye and did as good of a job portraying teens in this movie as Jason Reitman did in Juno.” The Video Vacuum
Teeth premiered on January 19, 2007, at the 2007 Sundance Film Festival in the independent drama category. It was released on DVD in the United States on May 6, 2007, by Dimension Extreme.