6.4/10
1,719
29 user 35 critic

The King Is Alive (2000)

R | | Drama | 11 May 2001 (USA)
When a bus breaks down in the desert, the passengers decide to stage "King Lear."

Director:

(uncredited)

Writers:

(with: inspiration from "King Lear"), | 1 more credit »

On Disc

at Amazon

3 wins & 3 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Romance | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

Kresten has moved from his parents farm on a small Danish island to Copenhagen in order to pursue his working career. When his father dies he has to move back to the farm, where nothing ... See full summary »

Director: Søren Kragh-Jacobsen
Stars: Iben Hjejle, Anders W. Berthelsen, Jesper Asholt
The Intended (2002)
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A period drama/thriller about a surveyor and his fiancée who arrive in a remote Malaysian trading post and encounter a closed-fisted ivory trader and her ill-meaning family.

Director: Kristian Levring
Stars: JJ Feild, Janet McTeer, Brenda Fricker
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Kira and Mads try to work out their marriage, after Kira has been two years in a mental institution, but is she really ready for the real world?

Director: Ole Christian Madsen
Stars: Stine Stengade, Lars Mikkelsen, Sven Wollter
Drama | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.4/10 X  

A man signs up for a test trial of a new anti-depressant as a way to change his life. When the trial is called off, he continues taking the medication with violent results.

Director: Kristian Levring
Stars: Ulrich Thomsen, Paprika Steen, Emma Sehested Høeg
Fuckland (2000)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.2/10 X  

Fabián, a magician from Buenos Aires, saves his money from weddings, birthdays, and bar mitzvahs, and uses a hidden camera to document a week-long trip to the Falkland Islands where he has ... See full summary »

Director: José Luis Marquès
Stars: Fabián Stratas, Camilla Heaney
Forbrydelser (2004)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

Anna is a recent graduate theologian who are in search of a job. When she is offered a temporary job as a priest at a women's prison, she sees no reason to say no. There she meets Kate, a ... See full summary »

Director: Annette K. Olesen
Stars: Ann Eleonora Jørgensen, Trine Dyrholm, Nicolaj Kopernikus
Comedy | Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

Several lonely hearts in a semi-provincial suburb of a town in Denmark use a beginner's course in Italian as the platform to meet the romance of their lives.

Director: Lone Scherfig
Stars: Anders W. Berthelsen, Ann Eleonora Jørgensen, Anette Støvelbæk
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A portrait of the effects of schizophrenia on family life is the central focus.

Director: Harmony Korine
Stars: Ewen Bremner, Brian Fisk, Chloë Sevigny
Lovers (1999)
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

A French woman falls in love with a Yugoslavian man, not realizing that he is an illegal immigrant.

Director: Jean-Marc Barr
Stars: Élodie Bouchez, Sergej Trifunovic, Madeleine Barr
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 8.1/10 X  

At Helge's 60th birthday party, some unpleasant family truths are revealed.

Director: Thomas Vinterberg
Stars: Ulrich Thomsen, Henning Moritzen, Thomas Bo Larsen
Drama | Sci-Fi
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  
Director: Kristian Levring
Stars: Henrik Birk, Lizzie Corfixen, Ole Dupont
Idioterne (1998)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

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.

Director: Lars von Trier
Stars: Bodil Jørgensen, Jens Albinus, Anne Louise Hassing
Edit

Cast

Complete credited cast:
...
Jack
...
Catherine
...
Henry
...
Charles
...
Ray
...
Ashley
Peter Khubeke ...
Kanana (as Peter Kubheka)
Vusi Kunene ...
Moses
...
Gina
...
Liz
Chris Walker ...
Paul
...
Amanda
Edit

Storyline

While shifting airports by bus in Africa, a group of passengers is driven to the middle of nowhere in the desert by the driver that is following a defective compass. They run out of gas and they reach a ghost village inhabited by a single man, Kanana. One passenger that has experience with desert gives five advices to the others to survive in the spot, among them to keep the spirit high, while he travels through the desert seeking for help. One intellectual in the stranded group suggests the performance of King Lear to keep the morale of the survivors. Along the days, while hope decreases, the tension increases among the survivors. Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

desert | tragedy | bus | stranded | village | See All (26) »

Taglines:

As the sand shifts...madness nears.

Genres:

Drama

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality and language | See all certifications »
Edit

Details

Country:

| |

Language:

|

Release Date:

11 May 2001 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Dogme 4  »

Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$17,929 (USA) (11 May 2001)

Gross:

$103,505 (USA) (10 August 2001)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

(TV) | (DVD)

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

This is the fourth film to be made according to the Dogme 95 rules. The Dogme 95 was founded by Lars von Trier, Thomas Vinterberg, Søren Kragh-Jacobsen and Kristian Levring. See more »

Crazy Credits

In Memoriam Brion James See more »

Connections

Featured in Side by Side (2012) See more »

Soundtracks

Every 1's a Winner
(1978)
Written by Errol Brown
Performed by Hot Chocolate
Courtesy of Chocolate/RAK Publishing
EMI Records
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Pretentious, Dreary, Ugly and Boring -- With Unlikable Characters
11 March 2014 | by (Ohio/PA border) – See all my reviews

I'm a fan of survival films, especially desert survival films like "Flight of the Pheonix" and "Sands of the Kalahari." Other films could partially fit this description as well, such as "Lawrence of Arabia," "Raiders of the Lost Ark," "Sahara," "The English Patient" and even the recent "Mummy" flicks.

"The King is Alive" is such a film. A bunch of travelers get stuck in the desolate Namibian desert and conduct Shakespeare's play "King Lear" to pass the time and keep their sanity.

"The King is Alive" is a Dogme 95 film wherein the director is bound by various restrictions, such as actual locations, natural light, no soundtrack or special effects. This is not necessarily a bad thing; in fact, it could well lend a gritty realism to the picture.

Unfortunately "The King is Alive" is a colossal bore. The characters are all incredibly unlikable; the story is dreary, slow and boring. The reenactment of "King Lear" comes across unbelievable and pretentious. The film basically shows the WORST in humanity and hence comes across negative, hopeless and pessimistic. Despite the beautiful Namibian photography, this is a very UGLY film.

Want proof? One girl fatally poisons another woman for no important reason and an aging man literally urinates on a dying woman (!!). Need I say more?

Needless to say, if you're looking for a hope-affirming film that will testify to the endurance, greatness and triumph of the human spirit, this is not it.

I'm not suggesting that all films have to be optimistic in nature, after all, I'm a fan of some fairly solemn films (e.g. "Apocalypse Now," "Runaway Train"), but this is ridiculous. I'd hate to meet the screenwriter because, whoever it is, he or she must be a very UGLY person.

I give one star for the gorgeous cinematography, half a star for Jennifer Jason Leigh, the only remotely likable person, and half a star for the gritty realism.

I saw the film twice and literally threw it away after the second viewing. Why not sell it or give it away? Because it's morally irresponsible to pass along garbage.

Oh, by the way, the end credits rip-off the credits sequence of "Apocalypse Now." Perhaps the director felt he had an equally great film on his hands. Not even close.


1 of 1 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for:
?