女を楽しくするニュースサイト「ウーマンライフ WEB 版」

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ダンサー・イン・ザ・ダーク(2000年)【ヒューマン映画】 Dancer in the Dark (2000) (human drama film)


監督 ラース・フォン・トリアー/Director: Lars von Trier
出演 ビョーク/カトリーヌ・ドヌーブ/Starring: Bjork‚ Catherine Deneuve



A ray of light shining in

The seconds or minutes until the beginning of the film‚ nothing but sound reverberates amidst the blackness. It is the same world of “in the dark” as protagonist Selma. Selma is a Czech immigrant who lives in a small American town. She has one son who has the same hereditary eye disease as her; one that requires surgery before the age of thirteen to prevent blindness. The symptoms of Selma herself have progressed and she is in the stages of losing her sight. Knowing this‚ Selma hides the truth at the factory where she works to prevent being fired.

Though poor‚ Selma saves money and lives cheerfully‚ hoping to one day pay for her son’s surgery. Factory co-worker Cathy (Catherine Deneuve) loves Selma’s reserved and pure personality and though irritated by her clumsiness she wants to help her. Selma applies for overtime work to be able to save a little more and is warned by Cathy not to hurt herself. Selma stays behind but Cathy comes to take her work. She says that she came because she was free but in actuality she cannot bear to have blind Selma operating the large cutter.

The savings for the operation are stolen by landlord Bill. Selma asks him to return the money but accidentally shoots him dead in the process. Selma‚ who has promised not to tell anybody about Bill’s financial troubles‚ refuses herself advantageous court evidence and receives the death penalty for the insincere and irresponsible man. Cathy arrives on her day of execution. She tells Selma that her son’s operation was successful. Selma listens to her‚ opening her eyes that cannot see. The last ray of light shined in a life of “in the dark”.

Bjork is good‚ but I can fully understand why Catherine Deneuve performed in this role. A downtown lady of good character who cannot stand by and let Bjork be trampled on by men and society just for being good-natured but blind and poor. She plays the role of a kind and level-headed woman very well. But being an overly attractive blonde who stood out too much was a bit of a turn off.

Director Lars von Trier was 45 years old and one of the central figures of the Dogme 95 film movement that occured in Denmark. Dogme 95 encompasses ten film production rules known as the “Vow of Chastity”. Filming is done on location‚ sound effects that are apart from the image are not used‚ camerawork is handheld‚ the film is shot in colour‚ “genre” films are forbidden. This film doesn’t satisfy all of these aspects but it is viewed as having Dogme 95 techniques. It won the Palme d’Or at the Cannes International Film Festival.