“How far is too far? There’s no point asking Lars von Trier. Anyone who has watched one of his movies will understand that he does what the hell he wants. Speaking of hell, Willem Dafoe and Charlotte Gainsbourg play a grieving couple who retreat to Eden, an isolated cabin in the woods, where they hope to repair their broken hearts and troubled marriage after the death of their baby. He flung himself out of a window while his parents were having sex. Perhaps he knew Lars was about to go all weird on us again.
With nature in as a forgiving mood as the auteur it isn’t long before things go from bad to worse, for the couple and for the viewer. Split into chapters – as well as a prologue and an epilogue – Antichrist starts unsurprisingly slowly, pitting the couple against their guilt, not helped by the deformities of nature popping up to offer yet more torment (and a few wise words). It isn’t until the second half (forgetting the stunt penis in the prologue) that the director infuses a visually-stunning slow-burner with gratuitous voyeurism and violence that rivals anything Takashi Miike has ever done. Some will greet it with revulsion, but this is horror at its most disturbing and most unwatchable, which surely can’t be a bad thing.” DW