Antichrist (2009): Random Review (Written By Jaeden Noel)
Recently, I've been getting into the works of Lars Von Trier. I recently started with Nymphomaniac Volumes 1&2 which were in my opinion not masterpieces, but truly well crafted cinema (Even though the ending blows). A few people recommended that from there I go to his 2009 horror drama Antichrist. While there was a lot to admire, there was a lot I didn't really like. Antichrist follows a couple solely identified as She/Him (Charlotte Gainsbourg & Willem Dafoe). After the death of their child, the grieving pair head to their Eden cabin in the woods, where basically shit hits the fan.
Starting with the things I liked, right off the bat I must say I absolutely adored the camerawork. Everything about it felt so authentic and gave me inspiration for future endeavours I plan to create. I admired the same style in Nymphomaniac and from what I can tell it's evident in a few of Von Triers other flick's I've yet to see. As always Charlotte Gainsbourg delivers a 10/10 performance which further builds my excitement for Gaspar Noé's upcoming Lux Aeterna. Willem Dafoe gives the usual Willem Dafoe performance which isn't necessarily bad, but not something boast worthy. The Prologue and Epilogue of the film were absolutely beautiful and the imagery throughout the film was bold, brutal and beautiful. The couple's story (or lack thereof) is truly a terrifying head on journey, especially considering they are the only two people in the film therefore, all the focus is on them.
I don't believe in the fact that if a film is slow it is inherently boring. But if something is a genuine slow burn, there has to be genuine reason behind it, which is something I didn't feel was considered in this film. When this film is slow, its painfully slow. To the point where I almost just wanted to read spoilers ahead of what was actually happening on screen. Relying too much on symbolism at points (same issue I had with Nymphomaniac Vol 1) is just too much for my brain to process at such a slow rate. Perhaps it's subjective but it had to be said.
Von Trier also clearly doesn't like to hold back...anything. And it's very clearly proven here with is extremely disturbing violence. Maybe he has an obsession with female self mutilation as it was presented here AND in Nymphomaniac Vol 2, but I am just not for it. Both times it felt genuinely pointless and contributed no significance to the story whatsoever. 99.9% brutal and violent things don't bother/annoy me. But when it's as unnecessarily gross and graphic as this, I don't see a point in it.
Despite all that, it truly is well crafted filmmaking, just maybe too Von Trier-y? It's obvious I'll need a second watch of this soon to kinda digest everything in a more prepared way, but for now to me it's really a mixed bag. I can't really recommend this on a general scale either because this is REALLY not for everyone and I REALLY mean that. Proceed with caution and prepare to never wanna be alone with your spouse again.