Lars von Trier is unconventional to say the very least, and while I woudn’t say I like him as a director, I certainly don’t dislike him.
I find with his films, the best thing for me is to sit down, watch what he has put on screen, then go away and reflect for a while. Then I feel able to formulate comments.
There are lots of very strange things about this film from a narrative point of view, but visually I thought it was very powerful.
Kirsten Dunst appeared to be barely able to hold her wedding dress together, just as she was barely able to hold her emotions together. The opening shots of planets colliding were intense, and Charlotte Rampling’s performance as the bitter mother was short but awesome.
I think as a chronicle of severe depression this is an excellent observation, with the mysticism of the planet adding to the atmosphere. The depressive sister finds it so much easier to accept that she has no control over what is about to happen, whereas her control-freak sister cannot deal with it.
And the choice of music was fantastic – I actually stayed to the very end to find out what music had been used. It turned out to be the Prelude for the first act of the opera Tristan und Isolde by Richard Wagner.
The more I think about it, the more I like this film. Quite a lot.