Breaking the Waves (Lars von Trier, 1996)
The question of whether there is a God guiding Bess, the protagonist in Lars von Trier’s Breaking the Waves, is the central mystery structuring the film. From the opening wedding scene right until the film's violent conclusion (in which we finally get a pretty conclusive answer about His existence), we watch and wonder if she is acting on His word, or out of a strange kind of delusion; if God is punishing her? Or if she is simply facing the consequences of other people’s own delusions, fears, psychological traumas, and prejudices?
Keep reading with a 7-day free trial
Subscribe to The Animus Substack to keep reading this post and get 7 days of free access to the full post archives.