19 May 2011

von Trier

AP/Yahoo News | David German | Cannes bans Lars von Trier after Hitler remarks

Von Trier told reporters at the 'Melancholia' news conference that he had some compassion for Hitler.

'What can I say? I understand Hitler, but I think he did some wrong things, yes, absolutely. But I can see him sitting in his bunker in the end,' von Trier said. 'He's not what you would call a good guy, but I understand much about him, and I sympathize with him a little bit. But come on, I'm not for the Second World War, and I'm not against Jews. ...

'I am very much for Jews. No, not too much, because Israel is a pain in the ass.'

Von Trier went on to say he also admired Hitler aide Albert Speer."
I can't stand von Trier. The Dogme 95 manifesto and "vow of chastity" that he co-wrote are pretentious and arrogant, and fundamentally misunderstand Art. His films are over-rated and self-indulgent.

But all of that is hard to explain to people and doing so makes me look like a jerk. So I'm pleased from now on that I can answer "Why don't you like Lars von Trier" with the much more concise "He's a Nazi sympathizer."

PS I find it amusing that this assemblage of artists, claiming to value free expression, questioning of society's rules, outsiderness, etc. has decided this utterance is over the line. Everyone has sacred cows, even the people who pride themselves on skewering sacred cows.


  1. > But all of that is hard to explain to people and doing so makes me look like a jerk.

    Well, not to me! Your post led me to look up his manifesto, and (a) learn something new, (b) conclude that he's an asshat.

    Well done!

  2. Btw, the captcha I just had to type in was 'jagauf'. Somehow fitting for a comment on a post about a European intellectual, no? ;-)

  3. Well, it's harder to explain in person, when people can't flip open a wiki tab and look up his manifesto.

    And yes, "jagauf" is the best of all possible captchas for this post by a mile!