Rated R 135 minutes 2011

Lars von Trier’s filmography has been a bumpy ride — pretentious, fastidious, awake to human possibilities yet hampered by a deadening finality. But this ostensible science-fiction drama about the end of the world and its emotional impact on a troubled family group may well be his masterpiece. Conceived in the midst of the writer-director’s bout with depression, it shows what happens to a willful young woman named Justine (Kirsten Dunst in a career-defining performance), her intended husband (Alexander Skarsgård), her sister (Charlotte Gainsbourg) and the sister’s husband (Kiefer Sutherland) while they wait in a secluded villa for an approaching planet, Melancholia, to collide with Earth. It’s not so much an allegory as a hallucination in the key of “von Trier minor,” with some of most gorgeous visuals of his career wedded to passages of Wagnerian musical doom. Nothing von Trier has made before approaches the gravity of this. (135 min.)

Film Credits

Official Site:

Director: Lars von Trier

Producer: Meta Foldager, Louise Vesth, Peter Aalbaek Jensen and Peter Garde

Cast: Kirsten Dunst, Charlotte Gainsbourg, Alexander Skarsgard, Brady Corbet, Cameron Spurr, Charlotte Rampling, Jesper Christensen, John Hurt, Stellan Skarsgard, Udo Kier and Kiefer Sutherland



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