This WeekPublished December 6, 2013 in Film
Lars Von Trier’s two already released films in his Depression Trilogy have been met with controversy. Controversy, therefore, is not new to Trier. The first was Antichrist, released in 2009 and starred Charlotte Gainsbourgh – his muse – and Williem Defoe. Antichrist follows a married couple as they deal with their grief over the death of their son. Its final thirty minutes consisted of self-mutilation, torture and murder. Then came Melancholia in 2011 starring Kirsten Dunst, met with less controversy but equally having a Lars Von Trier stamp – a bleak plot and an artistic direction. Now, with Nymphomaniac, set to be released in March 2014, Trier has created a four hour film following Joe (played by Charlotte Gainsbourgh), a self-confessed sex addict, as she recites her life story to Seligman (played by Stellan Skarsgard).
But the question in all of our minds is – has Lars Von Trier now gone too far? Sex addiction is not new to us. Steve McQueen’s Shame, released in 2011 and starring Michael Fassbender was met with positive reviews for its accurate portrayal of sex addiction, balancing the tragic and realistic way of life for such a prson. Trier’s film, however, contains countless sex scenes and has been compared to a ‘bad porn movie’. It is said the film will contain threesomes, orgies, sadomasochism and real sex amongst actors. All of this is not new. Sex is all around us but it’s the way Trier decides to portray that poses such questions of why and is it too much?