So I just watched a film called Anti-Christ starring William Dafoe and Charlotte Gainsbourg and it was directed by Lars Von Trier. It was displayed at the Cannes Film Festival in 2009 and it also got selected for screening at the Toronto International Film Festival and the New York Film Festival. I am a sucker for these arty kinds of movies but I swear nothing could have prepared me for this film. I can handle a whole bunch of disgusting films without even the slightest little pinch in my soul. The funny thing is though, this film was no where near as bloody as say Saw or Hostel or these straight to DVD horror flicks. This movie starts off slow and before you know it you’re Alice tumbling down that rabbit hole and landing in a world without rules, where chaos reigns and fear is king. Before I get into how I felt about this movie let me first share with you a few quotes that got me nibbling at the bait.
“The Most Shocking Film in the History of the Cannes Film Festival.”
– Anita Singh, The Sunday Telegraph
“Powerfully Made. It’s Depths Are Frightening…Von Trier Has Reached Me and Shaken Me.” – Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
“I Don’t Think I Breathed For The Last Half – Out Of Shock, Out Of Stress, Out Of Disbelief.” – Wesley Morris, The Boston Globe
Ok fine, we do see these kinds of comments on some of the most commercialized movies out there but this one was spot on. The last two quotes are the ones that I can relate to the most. At one point in this film I swear it felt like something was sucking at my humanity. I wanted to look away but the film compelled me to keep watching, I needed to know what happened. It left me physically shaking and it’s the first film that has truly identified my limits as to how much I can handle. If the movie had to have gone on for another half an hour I really think I would’ve had to switch it off because I was reaching a breaking point.
Obviously this will not be everyone’s cup of tea and I’m sure plenty of people will be able to shrug this movie off but if you do watch this film. Try not to think of anything else except immersing yourself in this film completely and you won’t be disappointed.
- Lars von Trier is not a Nazi, he’s just a naughty self-publicist (guardian.co.uk)
- ArtsBeat Blog: Lars von Trier Says Actually, He Isn’t Sorry (artsbeat.blogs.nytimes.com)