PATRICK CHAPMAN WRITER, DUBLIN
The first thing that struck me was how absolutely beautiful the film is. The prologue was heartbreaking and could almost have been a self-contained short. Antichrist as a whole is probably a masterpiece. It’s one of the most hardcore romantic films I’ve ever seen, in the sense that Don’t Look Now, Bad Timing and Dead Ringers were. I loved that it’s true to its own nightmare logic, and it was refreshing that it didn’t cop out.
Antichrist begins with a horrific event and descends into another kind of horror. Freud isn’t dead; he’s just lying in the woods with his entrails hanging out. The film has the courage of its convictions; it’s not afraid to be as intense and provocative. It didn’t shock me, but it unsettled me, drew me in and beat me up emotionally, which is what I expect from this director.
The violence was no more than what happens in the real world. Gainsbourg’s character goes through hell, but so does Dafoe’s. I think their woundings are symbolic of how the director feels about people, not just women.
If you want to be provoked, enthralled, challenged and made to think about your place in the world, go see it. Also, it’s a perfect date movie: if your relationship survives a viewing of this film, you should probably get married.