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Melancholia (the film)

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  • Mary
    Has anyone seen von Trier s Melancholia ? Despite some above par cinematography and Dunst s performance, I was hugely disappointed. Based on the similar theme
    Message 1 of 3 , Dec 30, 2011
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      Has anyone seen von Trier's "Melancholia"? Despite some above par cinematography and Dunst's performance, I was hugely disappointed. Based on the similar theme of Earth's destruction, the overall artistry and depth of emotion doesn't compare favorably with Tarkovsky's "The Sacrifice." If you only have 5 days to prepare for a cataclysm, would you do ordinary or extraordinary things?

      By focusing on the personalities of the two sisters, one clinically depressed yet not being treated despite her wealth, and the other, the mother of a young boy and overwhelmed caretaker of her sister, he excludes what's happening in the rest of the world. This is a reasonable approach in order to have them somehow represent modern women. Yet the women are simply not as 'real' as their counterparts in Tarkovsky's more mystical, less realistic film. This, I think, is what Zizek means when he says that an essence can be conveyed more effectively through an appearance than through the actual. Tarkovsky's symbolism engages more than von Trier's minimalist attempt at realism. Despite depression and concerns for material security, certainly contemporary concerns, von Trier's characters ironically seem plastic compared to Tarkovsky's more hysterical counterparts.

      Mary
    • William
      ... Now what is a good path to follow when you hear you have little time left is a great question. First you gotta find how much time. Then you treat your
      Message 2 of 3 , Dec 30, 2011
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        --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "Mary" <josephson45r@...> wrote:
        >
        > Has anyone seen von Trier's "Melancholia"? Despite some above par cinematography and Dunst's performance, I was hugely disappointed. Based on the similar theme of Earth's destruction, the overall artistry and depth of emotion doesn't compare favorably with Tarkovsky's "The Sacrifice." If you only have 5 days to prepare for a cataclysm, would you do ordinary or extraordinary things?
        >
        > By focusing on the personalities of the two sisters, one clinically depressed yet not being treated despite her wealth, and the other, the mother of a young boy and overwhelmed caretaker of her sister, he excludes what's happening in the rest of the world. This is a reasonable approach in order to have them somehow represent modern women. Yet the women are simply not as 'real' as their counterparts in Tarkovsky's more mystical, less realistic film. This, I think, is what Zizek means when he says that an essence can be conveyed more effectively through an appearance than through the actual. Tarkovsky's symbolism engages more than von Trier's minimalist attempt at realism. Despite depression and concerns for material security, certainly contemporary concerns, von Trier's characters ironically seem plastic compared to Tarkovsky's more hysterical counterparts.
        >
        > Mary
        >Mary, sounds dark is it nihilistic? The apocalypse thing is done so many ways. This one sounds non action. I ilke to see mountains fall and lots of people getting crushed. Now I would not want Christianne Dunst get crushed as I already have a crush on her.
        Now what is a good path to follow when you hear you have little time left is a great question. First you gotta find how much time. Then you treat your shock. That treatment depends on how much time you have. Alcohol would be a good starter if you only have three days. It can treat the fear but not take all your remaining time. If you plan to go out with others a group exit could be arranged. If it gets violent you might provide weapons and food. Then it is the medication of your choice I mean what are they gonna do arrest you. Now it is nihilistic if it admits the end of personal existance in an atheistic cosmos. Now does that realisation cause anti social behavour? Certainly many will act in a criminal way and some would react in a protective way. I would be protective but well medicated. My substances of choice would probably be dictated by availability. I don`t think I want to die robbing a drug store. Comfortably numb comes to mind. Bill
      • Mary
        Thinking more about this film, I suppose we aren t being asked to like or pity these characters. There is actually something banal and insipid in their
        Message 3 of 3 , Jan 4, 2012
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          Thinking more about this film, I suppose we aren't being asked to like or pity these characters. There is actually something banal and insipid in their respective depression, wealth, and parenthood. The wife depended on the husband, an amateur astronomer, for information from the outside world and surreptitiously consulted the internet for information about the approaching planet, not forany information about how the outside world was faring. Their isolation on the estate/country club and the film's conclusion seemed almost childish compared with the significance of the event. I can't decide if von Trier was condoning or condemning their relationship with society, or simply provoking us to think about whether what we do makes any difference. My understanding of existentialism plus my rapprochement with 'spirit' leads me to think such a relationship makes all the difference.

          Mary

          --- In existlist@yahoogroups.com, "Mary" <josephson45r@...> wrote:
          >
          > Has anyone seen von Trier's "Melancholia"? Despite some above par cinematography and Dunst's performance, I was hugely disappointed. Based on the similar theme of Earth's destruction, the overall artistry and depth of emotion doesn't compare favorably with Tarkovsky's "The Sacrifice." If you only have 5 days to prepare for a cataclysm, would you do ordinary or extraordinary things?
          >
          > By focusing on the personalities of the two sisters, one clinically depressed yet not being treated despite her wealth, and the other, the mother of a young boy and overwhelmed caretaker of her sister, he excludes what's happening in the rest of the world. This is a reasonable approach in order to have them somehow represent modern women. Yet the women are simply not as 'real' as their counterparts in Tarkovsky's more mystical, less realistic film. This, I think, is what Zizek means when he says that an essence can be conveyed more effectively through an appearance than through the actual. Tarkovsky's symbolism engages more than von Trier's minimalist attempt at realism. Despite depression and concerns for material security, certainly contemporary concerns, von Trier's characters ironically seem plastic compared to Tarkovsky's more hysterical counterparts.
          >
          > Mary
          >
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