Lars Von Trier’s Antichrist gets anti-award

Lars von Trier’s Antichrist – Official Trailer from Zentropa on Vimeo.

 Antichrist gets anti-award at Cannes

Danish director Lars Von Trier has, somewhat predictably, caused more outrage with the film “Antichrist”. In it, the unnamed character played by French actress Charlotte Gainsbourg retires to a cabin in the woods with her husband played by Daniel Dafoe. Grieving from the death of her son, she eventually sinks into depression and lunacy, notably slicing off her clitoris.

Fans of Von Trier were shocked. The press were shocked. And some of the more sensitive professionals were positively outraged by a film that is being slated as deeply misogynist.

One of the most vocal critics was French filmmaker Radu Mihaileanu, who heads the international ecumenical jury at the Cannes Film Festival. “We cannot be silent after what that movie does,” he said. And he wasn’t: the jury awarded “Antichrist” with an anti-award – which is probably a first at Cannes which has seen some pretty outrageous celluloid over the years.

“the most misogynist movie”

According to Mihaileanu, who is best known for “The Concert” and “Live and Become”, the film is “the most misogynist movie from the self-proclaimed biggest director in the world,” (Von Trier had made comments along those lines at a post-screening news conference – but honestly, who takes him seriously?). Mihaileanu added that the movie believes that the world has to burn women in order to save humanity.

I’m not sure that a literal reading of Lars Von Trier is very helpful. For what it is worth, he has stated that “Antichrist” is not misogynist.


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