Film Review Friday: Dancer In The Dark (2000)

Starring: Peter Stormare, Stellan Skarsgard, David Morse, Udo Kier, Bjork, Catherine Deneuve, Joel Grey, Jean-Marc Barr
Runtime: 2 hours 14 minutes
Rating: 15
LoveFilm synopsis: Selma (Bjork) is a Czech immigrant who works as a machine operator in an American tool factory. Almost blind herself, she struggles to make enough money to pay for the operation which will save her son’s eyesight, and has nearly collected the complete sum when the money is stolen from her by the cop (David Morse) who lives next door. Discovering this, Selma goes to appeal to the cop’s mercy, but he refuses to listen and pulls a gun on her, an act which will have fatal consequences for the both of them. With songs by Bjork herself and spectacular dance sequences filmed with a mass of digital cameras, Lars von Trier’s film is both an ultra-modern take on the film musical and a tear-jerker in the classic tradition.

My verdict: I have been a fan of Bjork’s music ever since I first heard her song Human Behaviour. Her 1993 album, Debut, has always been one of my favourites, especially the song, There’s More To Life Than This, so I was excited to see the film Dancer In The Dark available to watch on LoveFilm instant.

Even though I have known of Bjork as a singer for twenty years now, her performance was so compelling that I actually forgot that she was acting and I believed that Selma was real. I was drawn into the film so much that at times I was actually shouting at the TV. Catherine Deneuve was brilliant as Selma’s friend and work colleague, Kathy and Siobhan Fallon Hogan was fantastic as Brenda (I won’t spoil things by saying who she is). Just to say that I loved Siobhan Fallon Hogan in New In Town (2009) so it was great to see her in another great role.

The film was brilliant, but definitely not a comedy. If you like watching films that make you think, you really should check it out. Bjork is simply outstanding. I haven’t been so angry with a film in a long time, though to be fair I do usually watch romcoms, so not much call for shouting and getting annoyed there!

I have just checked LoveFilm’s website and Dancer In The Dark is only available to watch on LoveFilm instant for the next 16 days so don’t miss out!!!


9 thoughts on “Film Review Friday: Dancer In The Dark (2000)

    1. Thank you 🙂 I agree with you, she was brilliant. I felt like crying at the injustice of it all. I’ve been wanting to see it for years so I was so pleased when I finally got to watch it. She’s such a good actress and Selma felt so real.

  1. A marvellous film; with Bjork spellbinding, and Deneuve as captivating as ever. I never understood why it didn’t get more praise, and a wider audience.
    Best wishes, Pete.

    1. I love it so much, but the ending still haunts me, even now. I think if people don’t like Bjork’s music, they might have avoided it for that reason, which is a shame as the film is simply amazing.

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