Friday, December 16, 2011

The end of the world in "Melancholia"

by Salman Hameed

Here is another stunningly beautiful film by Lars Von Trier: Melancholia. Yes, his films are challenging and sometimes (always?) difficult to watch, nevertheless, he is an amazing filmmaker and always has a lot of interesting things to say. I loved (and flinched watching) his last film Antichrist. The opening sequence of Antichrist is stunningly beautiful and unbelievably sad. The rest of the movie is full of religious references and can be considered as an alternative take on the Original Sin and the Garden of Eden.

Now comes Melancholia. The opening sequence is absolutely phenomenal - and that alone is worth the admission! It tells you the whole story - and yet we want to know how do these dots really connect. It is not a spoiler then to tell you that the world gets destroyed in this movie. Oh - but what a spectacular destruction it is! The world, in fact, is destroyed by a planet named Melancholia. It is interesting that we have two movies this year, this and Another Earth, that have used the discovery of a new planet very close to the Earth as a device to talk about human conditions (see our review of Another Earth here). But neither of the films is science fiction and lets not even begin to talk about the scientific accuracy of these films. Nevertheless, there is something going on where such planets are in the zeitgeist.

Here is our autopsy (review) of Melancholia, and this time we are joined by novelist and former producer of 60 minutes, John Marks. He also runs the fantastic blog, Purple State of Mind:

Film Autopsy of Melancholia from kevin taylor anderson on Vimeo.


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