Stray Dogs, the latest film from Taiwanese director Ming-liang Tsai, (Vive L'Amour, Good Bye, Dragon Inn), is a work of elegiac minimalism focused on an unusual family eking out an existence at the very bottom of the economic ladder. Using extended, primarily static shots, Tsai explores the emotions of a father near the end of his rope and the two children whom he takes care of along with a woman who works at a grocery store (who may be their mother, but I’m not sure). The nuts and bolts of the simple story are not of great importance in this impressionistic picture; rather it is the anger, anguish, and occasional joy expressed by the characters. Of equal weight are the everyday chores and habits they undertake to sustain themselves--eating, washing, working, etc. This is a slow, subtle, observational movie which may drive many audiences crazy, since very little happens over the course of more than two hours. However, if you have the patience to allow Tsai’s film to take you over, there are many rewards.