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Melancholia (2011)

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Two sisters find their already strained relationship challenged as a mysterious new planet threatens to collide with Earth.

Director:

Lars von Trier

Writer:

Lars von Trier
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Popularity
1,542 ( 245)
35 wins & 90 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Kirsten Dunst ... Justine
Charlotte Gainsbourg ... Claire
Alexander Skarsgård ... Michael
Brady Corbet ... Tim
Cameron Spurr Cameron Spurr ... Leo
Charlotte Rampling ... Gaby
Jesper Christensen ... Little Father
John Hurt ... Dexter
Stellan Skarsgård ... Jack
Udo Kier ... Wedding Planner
Kiefer Sutherland ... John
James Cagnard James Cagnard ... Michael's Father
Deborah Fronko Deborah Fronko ... Michael's Mother
Charlotta Miller Charlotta Miller ... Betty 1
Claire Miller Claire Miller ... Betty 2
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Storyline

On the night of her wedding, Justine (Kirsten Dunst) is struggling to be happy even though it should be the happiest day of her life. It was an extravagant wedding paid for by her sister and brother-in-law who are trying to keep the bride and all the guests in line. Meanwhile, Melancholia, a blue planet, is hurtling towards the Earth. Claire (Charlotte Gainsbourg), Justine's sister, is struggling to maintain composure with fear of the impending disaster. Written by napierslogs

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

It will change everything. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Sci-Fi

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some graphic nudity,sexual content and language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site | See more »

Country:

Denmark | Sweden | France | Germany

Language:

English

Release Date:

26 May 2011 (Denmark) See more »

Also Known As:

Melancolía See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$7,400,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$257,174, 13 November 2011

Gross USA:

$3,030,848

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$15,946,321
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

|

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Writer and Director Lars von Trier cites Jean Genet's play "The Maids" as a source for elements of the story, adding that Penélope Cruz had originally suggested that he direct an adaptation of the play. See more »

Goofs

The planet Melancholia disrupts all electricity in and around the house, including the electrical systems in the cars in the driveway. However, Claire is able to jump in an electric golf cart and drive away with no problem. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Michael: Sir. Eh...
[looking backward]
Michael: Yeah, you're good. You can back up a little more, if you want. I think you need the... I think you need that extra...
Justine: [laughing] I don't think he can hear you.
Michael: Sir. Sir, can you hear me up there?
[fiddling with controls]
Michael: Do you copy, sailor? He's in a different county, I think that's...
Justine: [laughing]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in 73 Questions: 73 Questions with Sarah Jessica Parker (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Fly Me to the Moon
(Bart Howard (as B. Howard))
© THE RICHMOND ORGANIZATION
(HAMPSHIRE HOUSE PUBL. CORP./STANDARD MUSIC)
(P) ZENTROPA MUIS ApS
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

What the Hell????
31 October 2011 | by t_malySee all my reviews

Not to ramble strongly for or against this film, I can see why many people would love it and why many people would hate it. It's very unusual of a movie, has a strong feeling of artisticness, which gives it an advantage.

Unfortunately it hardly has any story or plot and barely anything happens in the film, as well as the two main parts are totally incohesive. The first half of the movie is about a depressed sister getting married, which shows a really strong depth to her hopelessness.

However, half way through the movie, it switches focus to the other sister, where miraculously, everyone else in the film but the sisters, her son, and her husband, simply leave. The entire second half of the film really has no connection to the first half except that it shares 3 of the same characters. Mid-film, it switches from a drama to a sci-fi, and I'm still at a loss whether to like the idea or abhor it.

There really is no cohesiveness to the two parts of the movie, so it almost seems like the writer either couldn't think of a full-length script and put two separate ones together, or thought it would be clever/genius to do so. The second part, given that there are only 3 characters (other than a little boy), is dull. The majority of the dialogue (and there is little) is a back-and-forth paranoid conversation with the husband and wife about whether or not this planet in the sky is going to hit the earth. There is no actual conflict, nothing that can be done about it, and totally makes no sense as a film, except to convey something apparently profound about the human soul or something. I dunno.

The constant replaying of Wagner's Tristan and Isolde as the entirety of the film's soundtrack gets quite annoying fairly quickly. Especially when it's the same part played over and over.

Two final things leave me with a sense of frustration/disappointment. The film's climax is the collision of this blue planet with earth and the characters do nothing in the film other than pointless dialog and running around. The film ends quite suddenly and while the cinematography seems beautiful, I really wonder what the whole point was. There was no story other than what can be described in a short sentence: Two sisters, a husband and their small boy are at a hotel golf resort to observe a blue planet 'moving past' Earth, mostly with dialog of depression and paranoia, when in fact it ends up colliding. The end.

My final gripe is Kiefer Sutherland's character. As an astronomer, he observes this blue projectile planet and is convinced that it will just pass Earth by. Yet when he realizes it doesn't, he ends up committing suicide, leaving his wife and young son behind. I can understand fear and hopelessness and surprise on his part, but what the heck kind of father/husband leaves his wife/child behind when the world is going to end, not doing everything possible to protect/comfort/care for them? It was stupid and didn't add anything to the story other than make me not like it. Not just the character, but the movie as a whole. Why would I want to spend 2 hours of my time watching dullness and nothingness that just is meant to make me feel depressed? It's artistic and beautiful, but sometimes making art into a film just doesn't work for me.


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