Tuesday, July 3, 2012


The opening moments of Lars von Trier's Melancholia contain a number of surreal images set against an orchestral score. It looks odd to an outsider of von Trier's work, but not so much to those who have seen at least one of his films.

Justine (Kirsten Dunst) in the first half of Melancholia displays an uncertainty towards her new life as a married woman. It's likely she has a fear of commitment, but it's hard to say. Some view her behavior as erratic, but they don't know what goes on in her mind.

Claire (Charlotte Gainsbourg) is different from her sister Justine. She's much more reserved however she can be uneasy at times as shown in various moments throughout the film. It's during her brief bouts of hysteria that it's Claire who's the more erratic of the two sisters, not Justine.

There's a slightly unsettling aspect of Melancholia in the knowledge that von Trier thought of the premise after a therapy session. (Those Danish directors sure are quirky.) Still, it shows his frame of mind on this sort of subject.

I really liked Melancholia, though I didn't love it as much as Dogville. Maybe because Melancholia got really depressing really fast and Dogville didn't. That said, it's worth a look.

My Rating: ****1/2


  1. While it was really beautiful to look at, and I thought Kirsten Dunst' and Charlotte Gainsbourg put in brilliant performances (and I agree it was really depressing), I didn't like Melancholia (and I really wanted to!). Maybe it felt too slow, or too depressing, but I just couldn't like it. I really want to see some more von Trier though. Maybe I should keep an eye out for Dogville next?

  2. There's seems to be quite a lot of love going around for Melancholia, and I admit the opening sequence looked stunning, but that said, I thought it was not one of Lars Von Trier's best screenplays. The acting and visuals were praise-worthy, though

  3. I have always been predisposed to dislike Lars Von Trier, for various reasons, but I really did like Breaking the Waves. I am very intrigued by Melanchola, and your review piqued my interest further. :-)

  4. It's my favorite movie by Von Trier mostly because it is not soiled with his usual shocking for the sake of shocking moments.

  5. Kirsten and Charlotte gave such wonderful performances, but I really disliked this movie. The best part of watching it on VOD was that I got to fast forward through that opening sequence. and am I the only one that was bothered by the fact that the two sisters had different accents that were never addressed? At least I think they weren't.


Comments are appreciated. More so if they are appropriate.