Sunday, November 22, 2009

Dogville, a blog entry told in 15 screencaps and a prologue

There are so many moments in Lars Von Trier's Dogville that deserve having a photographic memory just so they can live in your mind forever. These shots, however, are just some of the ones that I decided to pick out. They are, naturally, all of Nicole Kidman since it's incredibly hard to watch Dogville and not just be taken by everything she does (unless you're of the "I hate von Trier" camp or the "Nicole Kidman is the worst actress in the world" camp - in which case I don't like you, but please keep reading the blog!) She towers over everybody and everything.

My personal favourite moment is the showdown between Kidman and James Caan. Kidman's shrugs and smirks and shakes of the head are fascinating in ways that an actress rarely is. I love how watching that scene she acts just like any child does when a parent goes on their usual arguments as if to say "here we go again" mixed with those confused looks and rolls of the eyes. It's a side of Kidman's "Grace" that we hadn't seen in the two and half hours prior and yet seems like the most natural of behaviours. It just proves how great Kidman is. I could watch that scene over and over again and never get tired of it.

I urge you to revisit this movie since it's one you may have forgotten is as powerful as it actually is. And it also helps remind what an invaluable inclusion Nicole Kidman has been in the cinematic landscape this decade. Has there been a mainstream "superstar" actor so intriguing in recent times? Between this and Birth from 2004 she single-handedly cemented her place in cinema history as an actress who will be discussed for decades into the future. Legacies aren't created by box office or being liked by the sort of people who make Transformer 2 one of the most successful movies of all time, that's for sure.

Now, let's not speak about Manderlay, shall we?


Douglas Racso said...

nicole just broke her marriage to keith and married me. We are now happily married, happily ever after.

Drew said...

Manderlay is not terrible. It certainly pales in comparison to Dogville, but it certainly packed a hefty punch of its own. Despite the uniformity of style between the two films, the tone is refreshingly different. I'd argue that the second film is more morally difficult than the first, although not as powerful or devastatingly written.

Glenn Dunks said...

While I think it's impossible for Von Trier to make a truly "terrible" movie, I don't think Manderlay is in any way good or even passable. It's such a dull and weakened version of Dogville even down to the lesser casting of the main characters (I adore Willem Dafoe, but he's nothing on James Caan in Dgoville and the less said about Bryce Dallas Howard the better), even down to the bizarre re-casting of Lauren Bacall.

What once, in Dogville, seemed inventive and fresh was now tired and silly.

Eso Art said...

Kidman is fantastic in Dogville, a simply fantastic actor. I'm 100% with you on that:D