All the films from all the editions, including those subsequently removed, presently totalling 1167. An easy way of seeing how…
A Danish film produced in the Dogma style by Thomas Vinterberg that portrays a family having a party for their father when one son makes a toast speech that tells the truth about the murder of their eldest sister possibly involving the father.
”This family...is kaput.”
In the first film created under the rules of Dogme 95 manifesto, director Thomas Vinterberg addresses some serious and gut-wrenching issues and dares to ask some unnerving questions about the value and importance of truth and challenges some unchangeable facts like the integrity and holiness of family and shows us a disordered and problematic society which is suffering from melancholy and disruption. The biggest and most admirable achievement of Vinterberg is his ability in finding a balance between making a groundbreaking visual experience and at the same time telling a story in a classic way. Anthony Dod Mantle (the cinematographer of Rush, Slumdog Millionaire and 127 Hours)does a brilliant job by inventing a mind-blowing and at times…
I've put off since last night trying to review this film, and I don't think I'm ready to write anything cohesent now either, but here goes.
"Festen" is an early Dogme '95 movie that actually excels from adhering to the strict rules. The shaky cam puts you right in the middle of the chaos, the restriced lighting has an equal effect in strengthening the feeling of losing control of the events. I've never been much of a fan of music setting the mood either, and in forbidding such effects "Festen" really gets under your skin, with awkward silences and not a drop of sound drowned out from a musical score. All…
When filming according to the Dogme 95 rules, it quickly becomes apparent that story and storytelling is everything.
The Celebration tells a terrible story, but one that is captivating in its brutal honesty. Once the setup is finished and the catalyst in the story is revealed, most films of this type fall flat. This, however, doesn't.
It is intent to wrench every ounce of grief, pain, anger and fear out of its characters and make us a participant of it. It is hard to love this film because of its subject matter, but it is easy to admire it because of the skill on display.
Because of the level of sobriety in terms of filmmaking there is hardly any static to keep us from being sucked into the horrible hornet's nest that is this family. And if you allow all this to happen it makes for a harrowing experience that cuts deep.
Vinterberg's subsequent career has been so meh-minus that I actively feared returning to this and discovering that it's actually mediocre. No worries. I'll be writing a lengthy essay for The Dissolve when we do this as Film Of The Week soon (edit: here it is), so for now here's what I wrote from NYFF '98, to which I'll add only that this is perhaps the best movie ever made about damage control.
Given the appalling, anything-goes direction in which the movies seem to be heading, with Hollywood relying on shallow spectacle and foreign/indie auteurs on callow shock tactics, it's both telling and ironic that the best film in NYFF '98—the only truly first-rate flick in the lineup, for…
festen is the first film made in conjunction with the dogme '95 manifesto, which was composed by thomas vinterbeg (the director of festen), and lars von trier.
the restrictions of the manifesto mean that the driving forces behind a great dogme film will most likely be a simple but particularly engaging story, and excellently written characters played by excellent actors. festen surpasses expectation on each of these fronts. the cast, especially, consisting of some of denmark's best actors of recent years, has an extraordinary chemistry, as well as incredible individual performances from the four leads.
the film also highlights the tongue-in-cheek nature of the manifesto. as with other 'manifestos' published by lars von trier as prefaces to his earlier films,…
Part 23 of the 30 Countries project.
For the purposes of this project this movie is classed as at least partially being of Danish origin as per its listing on imdb.
It's fifteen years since I first heard of the Dogme '95 movement and ten years since I studied the first group of films and the two major players involved in drafting the manifesto, von Trier and Vinterberg, and yet somehow viewing Festen has eluded me until now.
Festen is quite clearly the best film made under the guidelines, not just for the visceral nature of the storytelling but the way Vinterberg made the obstructions, the restrictions, the vow of chastity work for his film. It seems like all other…
Heart wrenching to watch. A story of an unstable family and their vices. One of my all time favorite films.
A profound & hard-hitting portrait of the most dysfunctional family ever put to screen.
A kick to the dick, all the way from Denmark.
I'm conflicted. I didn't see the point of the "Dogme" style being used for this movie. My brother said as much when it was over. The acting was all great, especially from the father (Henning Moritzen) and brothers (Thomsen, Larsen) but the story just seemed kinda pointless. Maybe that was the point. I dunno. Still, I refuse to give this movie anything lower than 4 stars, because of the extremely memorable performances and surreal imagery. The cast took a movie that could have been so-so and made it great, almost on their own. Perhaps if someone else had directed it, or if the film's style were tweaked, I would have given it a five-star rating. It just seemed too "indie" for a movie about rich people having a family reunion. Watch the movie, you'll see what I mean.
Watching it again after all these years, I had forgotten what a masterpiece this film is. A really amazing piece of work.
Although I admire much about what the Dogme '95 movement was trying to achieve the end results, by their very nature, do tend to be rather alienating, cold, and simplistic. This (the first) is one of the better examples, yet never quite hits you as hard as the director clearly wanted it to. Perhaps its just a sign of its age and the inferior image quality compared to our more current sensibilities. Von Trier probably gets away with it due to his mischievous side which always comes across in his work. Vinterberg is sadly lacking in that department, although his latter films are far better developed.
Holy fucking shit. Festen is a film that will absolutely blow you away. It's dogme style fitting perfectly (twisted home movie/party video), the film takes you on a non stop thrill ride from beginning to end.
I should've expected nothing less from the genius Thomas 'the master of storytelling' Vinterberg.
The first film made under the Dogme 95 manifesto is a truly brilliant work that turned out to be the best film I saw all week. It concerns a family returning home for their father's 60th birthday party who are all stunned by the son's sudden revelation that their father sexually abused his children. The layers of this film are far too many to count and if anyone has seen it, I'd love to hear their opinions and observations. I thought the acting was incredible and felt more natural than almost anything I have seen before and this is partly due to the ramshackle way the film was shot, I am sure. What also struck me was the way in…
- A Trip to the Moon
- The Great Train Robbery
- The Birth of a Nation
- Les Vampires
- Citizen Kane
- 2001: A Space Odyssey
- Tokyo Story
- The Rules of the Game
- The Captive
- Clouds of Sils Maria
- Goodbye to Language
- The Homesman
Originally a list made prior to Cannes 2014.
This is every Palme d'Or nominee since the festival began in 1946.…