Dancer in the Dark (2000)
Critic Consensus: Dancer in Dark can be grim, dull, and difficult to watch, but even so, it has a powerful and moving performance from Bjork and is something quite new and visionary.
Set in rural America in 1964, an immigrant and single mother who works at a factory takes refuge from her hardships by imagining herself and her co-workers in Hollywood musicals.
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as Dr. Porkorny
as District Attorney
as Gene Jezkova
as Defense Attorney
as Angry Man
as Officer of the Court
as Clerk of the Court
as New Defense Counsel
as Person in Doorway
as Woman on Night Shift
as Man with Hood
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Critic Reviews for Dancer in the Dark
Aims right for the heart and aces its target.
Denmark's enfant terrible Lars von Trier finally won the Camme Palme d'Or for this postmodern deconstructive musical featuring a stunning performance by Bjork.
Habitually galling director Lars von Trier's musical is a black-swan genre rarity - a 1960s-set sledgehammer to Broadway and Hollywood's insistence on sunshiny endings in golden-era musicals about Nazis, murder and suicide.
Everything about Bjork and Dancer in the Dark is enigmatic in an uncomfortable dissecting way that shows beauty in the crudest way, and crudeness in the complexity of advanced social mores.
Audience Reviews for Dancer in the Dark
It's like a Raymond Carver short story written by Ingmar Bergman, and directed occasionally by Baz Luhrman. Plus, it stars Bjork. Weird, wonderful slice of life story, a truly original film about characters on the margins trying to succeed on their own terms. Like nothing I've ever seen before.
Its a different type of musical. Von Trier finds an all star cast from Bjork to Peter Stormare and creates a dark and depressing piece of cinema. The dead silence of some scenes are bleak but its the musical scores that helps carry the film.
A devastating, soul-crushing take on the justice system concerning a blind immigrant (Bjork), who gets by as a machine-worker by day and a theater performer by night, who is exploited by some people she is closest to in 1964 Washington. This film is a full mixed-bag, as director Lars von Trier occasionally gets too self-righteous in his damning of America and its inhabitants, but the film still succeeds largely to Bjork's moving, incredibly realized performance, as well as a final 20 minutes that packs a devastating, tear-filled blow to the heart. Kudos to von Trier for inserting the "musical" aspect to this film in very clever ways, which gives a much-needed boost of life and energy to a very depressing and downbeat film. Be warned though, the end will make you weep like a baby.
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