Breaking The Waves (Von Trier, 1996): BFI Southbank, NFT2, 8pm
This film, part of the Lars Von Trier season at BFI Southbank, is also being shown on May 27th. Details here.
Chicago Reader review:
A breakthrough feature by Lars von Trier--the postmodernist Danish
director of The Element of Crime, Zentropa, and The Kingdom--this
all-stops-out melodrama set on the remote north coast of Scotland in the
early 70s produces some waves of its own. The plot concerns a naive
young woman (a galvanizing performance by Emily Watson) who falls in
love with a worldly oil-rig worker (Stellan Skarsgard) and marries him
despite some opposition from her tightly knit Calvinist community. When
the husband is paralyzed by an explosion, he persuades her to find a
lover and describe her sexual experiences to him. Shot by the great
Robby Müller, the film shifts powerfully between dizzying handheld
footage (given an unusual texture by having been transferred to video
and then back to film) recounting the harrowing story and gorgeous,
digitally doctored chapter headings that linger meditatively over
landscapes to the accompaniment of pop songs of the period. Improbably
combining elements from Carl Dreyer and Federico Fellini, this
159-minute feature shamelessly pushes the audience's emotions to the
breaking point--you won't come out of it indifferent, and even if it
winds up enraging you (I could have done without most of the ending
myself), it nonetheless commands attention.
Here is the trailer.