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The Idiots (1998)
"Idioterne" (original title)

 -  Comedy | Drama  -  17 July 1998 (Denmark)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 19,600 users   Metascore: 47/100
Reviews: 138 user | 82 critic | 15 from Metacritic.com

The group of people gather at the house in Copenhagen suburb to break all the limitations and to bring out the "inner idiot" in themselves.

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(uncredited)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Bodil Jørgensen ...
Karen
...
Anne Louise Hassing ...
...
Henrik
...
Jeppe
...
Josephine
Henrik Prip ...
Ped
Luis Mesonero ...
Miguel
Knud Romer Jørgensen ...
Axel
Trine Michelsen ...
Anne-Grethe Bjarup Riis ...
Katrine
...
High Class Lady
Erik Wedersøe ...
Stoffer's Uncle
Michael Moritzen ...
Man From Municipality
...
Josephine's Father
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Storyline

A group of perfectly intelligent young people decide to react to society's cult of an aimless, non-creative and non-responsible form of intelligence by living together in a community of "idiots". Their main activity becomes going out into the world of "normal" people and pretending to be mentally retarded. They take advantage of this situation to create anarchy everywhere they go and try by every possible means to make people annoyed, disturbed, miserable, ridiculous, angered, and shocked. The films start as they recruit a new lost soul and introduced her to their megalomaniac leader. Written by Matthieu Navarro

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

You're a whole lot dumber than you think See more »

Genres:

Comedy | Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for strong sexuality and nudity, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Official Sites:

Language:

Release Date:

17 July 1998 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

Dogma 95 - Idioterne  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

$2,500,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$7,235 (USA) (28 April 2000)

Gross:

$339,768 (Sweden) (3 November 2000)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (cut)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Part of the Canon of Danish Art and Culture. See more »

Goofs

This is a film that adheres to the 'Dogme 95' manifesto, so the usual goof rules do not necessarily apply. This includes shots of the crew, microphones and other equipment, as well as continuity errors. See more »

Quotes

[Susanne puts a "spastic" Ped behind the van's steering wheel]
Guide at Factory: Who... is he driving?
Susanne: Responsibility does them good.
[Ped drives off recklessly]
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Storytelling (2001) See more »

Soundtracks

The Swan
by Camille Saint-Saëns (as Camille Saint-Saens)
See more »

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User Reviews

It takes a Dane
27 April 2002 | by (Denmark) – See all my reviews

As a Dane it may be easier to see where Lars Von Trier is coming from with this social criticism (satire of social criticism!) movie.

First of all he comes from a country that prides itself in two traditions:

1. a state that takes care of and cares for everyone

2. a country that has a long tradition of social-criticism in literature and movies

For more than ten years it seemed that every big film project in Denmark had a social agenda...That was probably the only way to get financial support for your film project - which was most of the time, if not all of the time - supplied by the state.

This film is poking fun - primarily - at this social criticism tradition, while it also renews it.

But how much should we take seriously - Lars Von Trier would probably laugh at anyone, who takes this movie at face value - as a bona fide social criticism (which it is not!) and - of course - it fails as traditional "social criticism", just look at it - this is not a film like Pelle the Conquerer, there are no drunken, heavy-set men seducing their underage nieces and abusing the working man sadistically.

In short this movie wasn't meant to succeed in the genre in a traditional sense.

It has a more profound agenda - I have a hard time putting words to it, because what the movie says is so very Danish. Certain scenes are simply great: When they visit the factory and "the idiots" are allowed to turn the machines on and off...I can't explain why that is so intensely funny, but I'm pretty sure it's a Danish thing.

This film is funny, sad, sentimental, wonderfully-acted... It comments on a social-democratic tradition and state that embraces you for better and for worse...It also talks about capitalism in this system...Maybe it's really all about the compromise inherent in a social-democratic tradition existing parallel with a capitalist system. Such a compromise could be viewed as hypocrisy from a philosophical standpoint.

Central to this movie is the theme of honesty and sincerity...And all the while you don't want to take it too seriously, because you have a feeling that the director isn't all that serious about it himself...

In short I find the movie and it's intention irresistibly confusing.


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