torsdag 2. juli 2009

Lars von Trier's "Antichrist"

I wrote earlier in my blog about how I feared Von Trier had "jumped the bandwagon" in terms of shockingly violent movies. I wrote:

"But Von Trier has in a way jumped the bandwagon. In the past, Von Trier always made highly original movies that were not occupied with trends (like Dancer in the Dark , Dogville and The Idiots). Of course, I have not seen Antichrist and this is just based on the controversy surrounding the movie, but it seems like he's taken shortcuts, instead of making highly original movies. I hope I'm wrong here, and that Antichrist is the deeply disturbing piece of art I want it to be."

I was wrong. Antichrist was a deeply disturbing piece of art. Von Trier clearly creates his own unique universe, not copying European directors like Noe and Haneke. Von Trier blends the present with a mythological past, and successfully comments on humans, man and woman, in an abstract way. He's not just portraying the man and woman on screen, but calling them "He" and "She" he clearly adresses the sexes, and humans in a more abstract way. It is a deep and thoughtful study of the good and bad qualities inherent in man and womens nature.

Nature is a key word. Von Trier uses animals and a rural setting to further underline his point; man is a part of nature. We cannot be completely rational, we have urges, instincts, an inner animal. For Von Trier, the woman is more in touch with these feelings or instincts, and the man tries to bury it with rational thinking. Von Trier paints the man as just as animalistic as the woman, but worse: he justifies it with rational thinking. The ending showing the smug Willem Defoe thinking he has done human kind a favor or something, being really satisfied with himself.

This post will not read well if you haven't seen the movie, but my aim has been to involve people who have seen it and not promoting it to people that has not seen it. But it is really brilliant. Fantastic photography, subjectmatter, script, acting, directing. Maybe Von Trier's best movie.

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