Breaking the Waves - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Breaking the Waves Reviews

Page 23 of 74
½ October 13, 2008
A very sad story but it's really well acted. Emily Watson is incredible! She is died for being really makes me's a tragedy but it's absolutely a classic movie!
October 13, 2008
I saw this in the theatre and as a feminist it REALLY pissed me off!!!
October 12, 2008
es intensamente impactante pero hermoso.
October 10, 2008
Lars Von Trier takes us on an emotional tour-de-force, questioning love, commitment and religion. Emily Watson gives a great and memorable performance as the troubled Bess, and Katrin Cartlidge provides excellent support.
The only flaw has to be that final scene!
½ October 8, 2008
Emily Watson works far beyond all standards in her role as Bess. She's unbelievable. A film about the nature of faith and knowledge like no other.
½ October 7, 2008
Emily Watson~! This film really is all it was made out to be. Glad to have finally seen it. Brutal but oh so charming and very well put together.
Super Reviewer
October 7, 2008
Lars Von Trier takes us on an emotional tour-de-force, questioning love, commitment and religion. Emily Watson gives a great and memorable performance as the troubled Bess, and Katrin Cartlidge provides excellent support.
The only flaw has to be that final scene!
October 7, 2008
Best actress on this planet :-) How intense she!
½ October 6, 2008
Emily Watson's performance is nothing short of sensational, drawing you into her stupid but sweet character and making you really feel for her being set upon on all sides by unscrupulous friends and family members, and she is greatly assisted by an excellent supporting cast and Robby Mueller's amazing cinematography. However, von Trier's regularly hamfisted dialogue makes an appearance, and the pacing is well off until the final hour or so.
Super Reviewer
October 4, 2008
I don't really feel like giving this film much credit, but for all its hatefulness and misogyny and its impossibly warped view of the world, it does have a few strengths. Emily Watson's performance is one of them; it's nice to think that her Oscar nomination is appropriate reward for the dignity she sacrificed here, weeping hysterically in every other scene and having eerie channeled dialogues with God in others. It is to her tremendous credit that she pulls them off, but again, this role is absolutely degrading. Bess is merely a conduit for Lars von Trier's inflamed "torturing good-hearted women" fetish. There's nothing to show for this movie except for the systematic destruction of a naive, slightly unbalanced woman and everything she loves.

For a movie to have depth, it must first say something, and Breaking the Waves simply doesn't. The most you could probably ascribe to it is as a dialectic on Christianity, but the movie spins so far off its axis that it's completely ineffective for this purpose. If religion is futile, how do you explain Bess' sacrifice and the resulting consequence? The final few seconds of the movie? You can take it a step further and hone it into a faith vs. organized religion argument, but Bess is unironically colored as insane for the faith she exhibits. The movie is just looking for excuses to kick her while she's down and trying to make it seem purposeful.

On an ideological basis, I'd have given this movie only one star. It is well-made and reasonably gripping on a narrative level, but only in the way that you can't turn away from a train wreck. Emily Watson's performance earns it another. If this movie doesn't imprint her name on the mind of any cinephile, nothing will. Past that, Breaking the Waves' value ends.

Perhaps the greatest irony of all in the film is that the license plate on Bess' moped says "LOL."
September 30, 2008
What a depressing film! But I can hardly say it was a bad one.
½ September 27, 2008
I did not like this movie. All of Lars von Trier's movies annoy me. It makes me hate the communities that all their characters belong to. A lot of sex in this film. Gets annoying after awhile.
September 27, 2008
wow i have just seen this movie 4 the 1st time n think that this is a powerful movie 2 watch....this has got a good cast of actors/actressess throughout this movie...i think that emily watson is great throughout this movie...i think that the director of this Drama, Art House & International movie had done a really good job of directing this movie because you never know what 2 expect throughout this movie...its a sad movie 2 watch but its really good n enjoyable throughout....the scenery throughout this movie is really awsome...i think that Stellan Skarsgård (who plays the husband) plays the part of this chracters really well throughout this movie..this is a good movie n its really moving n powerful as well
½ September 27, 2008
transports you to another time and place. relentless march to doom. who could ever think the ending was good - utterly wrecked everything that lead up to it. lars von trier is a pompous arrogant s**t, but he sure can make hypnotic cinema.
September 23, 2008
A feeling of doomed inevitability runs through this film but the final shot brings much-needed hope. Lars von Trier was good, long ago!
September 21, 2008
Yet another Scandinavian masterpiece
½ September 17, 2008
very sad story with an uplifting ending.
September 16, 2008
Weird, dramatic but impressive..3rd time, Emily Watson is still unbelievable!
½ September 14, 2008
last scene was unnecessary. otherwise beautiful.
September 13, 2008
If I were being completely truthful, I would say that this movie wasn't as devastating as I was expecting it to be and that's due entirely to Emily Watson's performance, which ought to be iconic by now. Instead of making a catastrophically complicated mess out of her character, she brings a weird kind of enchantedness to it. That is, admittedly, part of the written character, but this kind of interpretation could not have been conjured in a more spot-on way. In fact, if anybody else had been played the character, it probably would have been embarrassing to watch. She is by the far the best aspect of the film and, luckily, she pretty much IS the film.
Page 23 of 74