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Reviews & Ratings for
Nymphomaniac: Vol. I More at IMDbPro »

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246 out of 364 people found the following review useful:

Worst Adult Movie Ever!.

Author: tommy-158-708163 from Sweden
14 November 2014

Lars Von Trier has made a lot of publicity and excessive advertisement of an adult documentary movie called Nymphomaniac. His intention was to make a porno movie and a movie with pornographic sex shots. He shot a very long movie .First it was approximately 4 hours of porno,but then he cut the movie and changed it completely into Drama!!. That is funny and so strange,but this is true.

Nymphomaniac is an adult boring movie documentary which focuses on a horny girl who adores sex. The name of the girl is Joe. She explicitly tells her sexual fantasies and imaginations to an old man called Seligman and how she became addicted to sex and nymphomania. Honestly when I saw the movie I felt so bored and kept looking at my watch and could not wait to leave the cinema because of this bad if not worst movie!.

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204 out of 304 people found the following review useful:

The Work of a Genius !

Author: Keith Edwards from Dearborn, MI
28 March 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

You will, I sincerely hope, not be offended if I were to speculate that you were enticed into inquiring into this movie and, for that matter, even reading this very review, because of the movie's title, yes? And the title obviously reflects on the movie's content which is focused on the reproductive arts. And, I shall further speculate that were the movie instead titled, say, "Existentialism" or such, and the story concerned a group of nuns who begin to question their faith, you wouldn't be reading this at all, would you?

Of course you know that von Trier is a celebrated director, but you didn't quite get around to seeing his masterpiece Dogville, did you? Nor, I suspect, have you seen his quirky 2007 cinema, The Boss of It All. In fact, the only reason you are even remotely interested in "Nymphomaniac" is that it depicts venery in an explicit manner. Confess! It's all true, isn't it?

Wait! Keep reading! Don't go away! It's OK! I know you're not like that, because you have standards. You would never watch or read porn. That's so . . . so . . . so >degrading< and low-class. But since you're a mature adult, very open minded and not bound by the strictures of organized religion, you have no objection to serious cinema with erotic content, do you? I mean, as long as it's tastefully done?

I'm here to assure you that "Nymphomaniac" is >not< pornography, because none of the actresses (or actors, mustn't be sexist here) have had any breast augmentation, nor do they wear cosmetics in the manner of slatternly women. For that matter, rest secure in the knowledge that absolutely nothing arousing occurs during any of the movie. No pleasure whatsoever, so it's safe. Your dog could watch it and not begin to look at you funny.

That's why von Trier is, without question, an absolute genius. Sex is one of the few natural pleasures we enjoy here in this vale of tears, and just as the finest minds of industry have ruined the joys of victualry and turned the simple act of eating into a problem, the brilliance of of von Trier is that he has ruined sex. "Joe," the protagonist of the movie, has sex frequently, but she doesn't enjoy it at all, and von Trier does his best to make certain that you don't either.

If you think about it, that's not such an easy feat. Suppose that you were given a camera, a crew and a group of attractive actors who don't mind nudity and simulating sex acts and were told to make a movie depicting venery, it would be difficult for you to make something completely unpleasant to watch. But von Trier has accomplished something you could never do: in this movie, no one has any pleasure. ex is presented as something perverse and unpleasant. "Joe" only engages in it because she's emotionally disturbed, or because her domineering girlfriend made her do it, or because of some Freudian mumbo- jumbo, and she obviously dislikes each experience, starting with the first brief penetration that hurts her.

>SPOILER ALERT!< Don't fall for the brief scenes near the end, of her actually enjoying her three lovers. Those are fantasies she tells in response to having Bach played for her. The music of J. S. Bach is the sublime representation of empyreal purity, and Bach fathered twenty children, so it's good, clean, church-sanctioned, procreative sex, not the naughty fun kind. (Ooo, look! He's bathing her! How lovely! How clean! How innocuous! What movie is this?) But as soon as the music stops, she announces, while in union, "I feel nothing."

The hypothetical sex movie you would write and direct would be unlikely to have acting that is as bland, tedious and affectless as the acting in "Nymphomaniac," but that's the way Lars von Trier wants it, because viewing good acting would be a pleasure to watch, and he wants to drain anything enjoyable out. I can imagine him shouting direction, "No! No! Make it even more lifeless! More monotonous!"

An obvious exception to this is the salient performance by Uma Thurman, but in that scene, the fine actress is introduced for the sole purpose of making a deliberately unpleasant situation even more disturbing. It goes on for an excruciatingly long time, because von Trier wants to rub your nose in the message: sex ruins lives and makes people miserable. The scene is comedic, but only in the way slapstick is.

Von Trier is not the first director to make a movie depicting sex as repulsive. The late Ken Russell also wrote and directed movies with that effect. Like this movie, Russell's movies were also promoted by ads and posters featuring an enticing shot of a woman in ecstasy, but that was just to lure you in. The movie itself taught you a lesson of rue. It is, after all, the glorious puritanical heritage of those of us of Northern European descent. We're not like those filthy people down there in the tropical climes, going at it like they was rabbits. Shame, shame, double shame on their gratification and pleasure! No wonder God punishes them!

All the enthusiastic reviews here are written under the pretense that there is some profound message embedded in this movie (especially the bedpan scene). The profound message is that sex must be presented strictly in terms of social isolation and as a manifestation of emotional disturbance. "Joe," represents all the repressed feelings of guilt and shame metastasizing deep within you. After all, if sex were depicted in a uniformly joyous light, you'd have to go to some sleazy site where they'd rip-off your credit card information.

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255 out of 412 people found the following review useful:

Wondering if you should watch this film?

Author: Anonymous from United States
18 March 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

Don't. Your time is far too valuable.

This film features unsimulated sex of pornographic actors digitally edited onto the parts of the real actors. So if you're looking for smut, you should instead watch a production from the "Silicone Valley" (or wherever it is the porn industry heads out of now). At least you won't have to labor through pretentious dialogue just to see some real action. It gets painful--the dialogue. There's a part in the movie where Skarsgard's character tries to rationalize the protagonist's nymphomania via the Fibonacci sequence. It really doesn't add anything meaningful to the plot, it's just von Trier trying to convince you that he went to college. No, I'm only half kidding. Read the spoiler.

*SPOILER* Assuming you don't heed my warning, and still decide to waste your time watching this film, then I won't won't give away too much, but Skarsgard's dialogue is supposed to build you up so you can be shocked by the, like, totally ironic ending of Vol. II...As if you couldn't see that coming, or as if you'll even care at that point. Just be glad it's over so you can go back to watching real porn ;) *END OF SPOILER*

And if you're looking for a film that debases contemporaries and challenges social taboos, well...I guess you can say this film does that, or at least attempts to. It's all pretty shallow, though, and really comes off as an excuse to feature unsimulated sex in a movie full of renowned actors. I would not feel so strongly about this if the actors' performances weren't so laughable. I might have even forgiven von Trier if the characters were redeeming or at least believable. For start, LaBeouf's character speaks with an accent not of this world. And Slater's performance as the aged father is comparable to a parody straight out of SNL. Without giving away spoilers, I'll just say I couldn't find one character I could sympathize/empathize with, because they were either too dull, too deplorable, or too comical.

Want to see a real art film? Un Chien Andalou, because this isn't art. And from a contemporary film's standpoint, there's really nothing to justify the extremes it has to reach in order to tell its story.

Don't do it. Or do it, I don't care. I did my good deed for the day.

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235 out of 383 people found the following review useful:

Children Acting In A Semi-Porno Movie.

Author: bella-159-555456 from Spain
14 November 2014

Nymphomania is a movie that will waste your time and money.

There are many porno scenes in this movie.

You will be shocked to see Joe the 10 year old child working in a movie that is rated X.

No story,just boring storytelling.

No drama,just too much porno!.

A waste of time because a nymphomaniac is a sex slave here who needs a psychiatric.

Go rent or buy an adult DVD If you enjoy porno and don't waste your time in watching a movie without a result at all!.

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198 out of 321 people found the following review useful:

A shameful movie with porn.

Author: powerfuandtruthful from Canada
15 November 2014

Nymphomaniac Volume I is simply a shameful movie with porn. It tells the story of a woman called "Joe" who was found on the street beaten and rescued by an old man called "Seligman". This film is a rather a porn biography of an insatiable whore who can never stop having sex!.

If you like explicit scenes of a hairy vagina,oral and anal sex,all you have to do is see this movie!.

My point of view about Nymphomaniac Volume I is that it is tasteless and absolutely cheap and watching this kind of movies will make porn seekers horny.

If you enjoy seeing some porn and explicit sex you gotta see this movie!.

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196 out of 319 people found the following review useful:

Extremely weak drama with dirty porn.

Author: adamfromaustralia from Australia
21 November 2014

Danish writer and director Lars Von Trier delivers an extremely weak drama/documentary film full of dirty porn (from explicit oral sex to anal sex and vulgar sex and nudity), Lars Von Trier claims that he is treating the problem of a nymphomaniac woman called "Joe",but in reality we trace the story of a dirty whore who becomes a sex slave and who have all kinds of sex and flesh pleasure for the sake of pleasure. The vulnerable drama is obviously seen in the monotonous Dialogue between Joe and the old man. I am extremely astounded Why Uma Thurman agreed to act in a dull movie like this that contains filthy porn !. Nymphomaniac Volume I is a movie to avoid because it is too boring and totally silly to watch even for porn lovers it is a trash movie.

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185 out of 309 people found the following review useful:

I did not see art ,I saw some porno in this bad movie.

Author: CarlosEspagna from Spain
25 March 2014

Hello everybody.This is my first comment on this site.I was very anxious to see Nymphomaniac movie by Lars Von Trier,but after I saw it I became very disappointed with this film for these reasons reasons:The movie does not have art,but it has some porno sex (woman gives a blow job a train and a man giving a blow job to a woman). Also it was a bad movie because it is not interesting at all.I found it boring with monotonous dialogue between Joe and Seligman who are the main characters.The movie offers sex and some porno,but never satisfies movie viewers.We don't know why a nymphomaniac woman is a sex slave who practices sex and masturbation for pleasure only and we see the opposite that she becomes addicted to sex and nudity and seems clearly in this movie she is not enjoying sex.To me Lars Von Trier should really convince us to see a movie and must work hard to make a good plot and not just provide us with porno to make us horny.

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215 out of 370 people found the following review useful:

An utter waste of your time.

Author: Rob_Taylor
6 March 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

It's rare I give a movie a single star, but I'll do it here. Before anyone freaks, let me say that the pornography did not in any way bother me at all. I've seen plenty of porn in my time and all of it, without exception, was done better than in this film.

The problem I have with this movie is more to do with the fact that it is deadly tedious and boring! No, seriously, with this much T&A in a film, it still manages to be utterly boring. It is impossible to empathise with the central female character because she seems so totally unlikable. She happily screws anyone and anything that she lays eyes on.

As a study of actual nymphomaniacs, I find this rather blunt portrayal of people with a sexual problem to be gratuitous and sensationalist and totally without any real concern for the subject matter being "showcased". It wasn't enough to simply follow the plight of a woman with a problem, you had to put her into every conceivable sexual cliché there was, just to get across your point that she was a sex addict?

Let me put it this way. If I went to a local porn shop, rented a dozen different movies about a dozen different aspects of sexual activity, then spliced the footage together with the non-sexual content from Nymphomaniac, you wouldn't notice the difference. Everything from bondage and sado-masochism, to threesomes, anal, oral, lesbianism and interracial material shows up here. It's like a porno pick 'n' mix!

Most of the time I was laughing so much at the utter absurdity of it. As I said, it's impossible to feel any kind of sympathy for the woman in the "story" (yeah, I used quotes deliberately there..) because the whole thing is such a sorry mess.

What we have here is another attempt to make a "cerebral" movie that falls flat on its face. The audience for this movie is unidentifiable. Those seeking a thoughtful study will be sorely disappointed and those looking for cheap titillation will find themselves bored to tears most of the time. Anyone seeking an actual story will likewise be left feeling cheated.

All in all, it fails. Another over-hyped excuse for "cinematic art" that accomplishes none of its stated goals. If it succeeds, it will be because people have been suckered into thinking its something that it isn't.

This is so preposterous that I expect the DVD/BluRay release will have a bright yellow, star-shaped sticker on the front emblazoned with the words "Contains actual penises and vaginas!" in a sensationalist font.

SUMMARY: Pretentious nonsense masquerading as an art movie. Hollow and dull, relying too much on its much-hyped pornographic content which is, frankly, dull as ditch water. Best avoided, though it is amusing in a "train-wreck" kind of way.

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140 out of 225 people found the following review useful:

A rather pretentious, boring, long and vaguely insightful film.

Author: kaymages from Greece
28 April 2014

*** This review may contain spoilers ***

CONTAINS SPOILERS OF BOTH VOLUME I AND II: I give a 1 to this film to balance if possible the high rating it got in this site. The film was rather pretentious and was at a certain degree a classic example of emptiness trying to present itself as "high art". The parallels of nymphomania with fishing in the first half of the film and with Christianity later where pointless and just to make impressions in my opinion, even insulting or blasphemous in some points i could say. Another thing i found strange was the extreme use of "deep" and "wise" references to mathematical, scientific and philosophical concepts. But it all seemed rather forced, messy, and meaningless. It also failed in my opinion to get deep in the human psyche and explore effectively or at least expose the spherical/ holistic nature of the phenomenon of nymphomania. It was quite single sided and narrow minded as i see it. As for the people that claim it was a deep psychological journey, sorry von Trier fans, but the impression this film gave me is that he is a person with poor and shallow insight on the human being not to say prejudiced. In the end i didn't feel being left with some serious food for thought, intriguing questions or spiritually benefited and more self-aware or with self doubt and criticism. I also had the impression that the film was quite naive in some psychological aspects and delivered a rather childish, unrealistic or idealistic view of the human psyche and reality (yes despite all the cruelty and misery depicted it still gave me that impression). Especially at the depiction of the first years of her life and her maturity to adulthood. The showing of nudity as some said and the sex scenes, where not that extreme and had a reason to be there in some moments, but in others i agree that they where there just for the shake of being, no help to the plot or anything. The exploration of the human perversions and fetishes was rather forced too, like the bdsm chapter, gave me the impression that it was there so that the director could state "look! we have put bdsm too in it" and didn't necessarily deliver the desperate odyssey and degeneration of a tortured soul in a realistically climaxing way. It is also important to mention that this was a humourless movie whatsoever. Every attempt of "humour" was rather too dark, trolling, unintelligent, immature or just provoking. Even the born to be wild song in the train scene. Or the casting of Shia Labeouf, if this had a humorous intention in the first place of course. So no mature and original humour. The acting was a bit sloppy too i think, i especially didn't like much the acting of the old Joe (who is the protagonist for god's shake)at a major part of the film but wasn't impressed by young Joe's either. Another weak point was the excessive use of tiring narration, exposition, a sign of weak writing that cannot deliver it's messages subtly and with ease but rather immoderately throws them at the viewer's face. One of the few things i liked in the film was how we got little secret messages and warnings from the beginning about the final scene, where the old man would try to take advantage of her. Honestly i expected that from the beginning. Some will say that it was another drawback of the film cause it was predictable, linear, unintelligent etc bit i think it was delivered in a nice and well thought way. One of the few well thought things of the film. The answers he gave to her shocking stories, how he always tried to justify her actions but came a bit needy, his body language and acting, even some verbal slip-ups. All came to draw the picture of a perverted, repressed old geezer that was ready to explode any moment now. Even he stated he read everything literature has to give on sex, showing his obsession but impotence to make his urges real. If it was just an asexual philosopher he would have read some things just to have an opinion on love but wouldn't have obsessively and explicitly exhaust all the relevant literature. I liked the depiction of the oppressed man, it was more effective than the nymphomaniac's unfortunately. I liked the antithesis of the two main protagonists. The insatiable one that fully gave in in her passion and the "ascetic monk type" that fully repressed it for a life. The one ended up repenting and the other dying for letting his passion feed inside him for all these years. They weren't so different in that sense that's why they came to all these distorted conclusions about love and life, each one by his perspective. Even that "catchy" phrase on love was talking about sinful destructive passion of egoism than love, but they never lived true love so they couldn't have a valid opinion on it. There where also practical mistakes in the film like plot holes, logical inconsistencies, unnatural time loops etc. but i don't want to waste time on these, let other commenters exploit these. For example she went to medical school and did a gyno exam in the beginning? how? was she on her medical specialty? no. she was just a sophomore where they just open corpses and such, they don't do gyno exams. (except if things are different in england and i'm mistaken). The p girl chapter near the end i found it rather bizarre, unrealistic, not making much sense and just being there to make more shocking impressions or hopelessly try to save something that seemed doomed already. So in conclusion four hours are far too much for a film that has no much to offer you (i include volume 2 too). But if you are so curious arm yourselves with patience and watch it.

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182 out of 319 people found the following review useful:

Truly repulsive...Just my opinion.

Author: Ryan Steven from United States
25 March 2014

I really am at a loss for words on how to describe how awful and repulsive this film was. I have seen some of Triers other work just out of curiosity. Yeah, he does push the boundaries and takes big extremes in his films which I am not that big of a fan of. Still, I take the time to watch a film, before I criticize. I gave this film a chance. Honestly, I think this is his wort film.

I am not going to into details of the story and plot as it would take too long and this movie doesn't deserve a complete breakdown review, not to mention, it isn't worth my time more than what I am going to type.

To me I saw nothing artistic, I saw nothing funny, it wasn't deep or meaningful in any way. All I got out of it was a grotesque pornographic punch in the face. I believe the plot to be weak. Some of the acting and performances were pretty good and that is all it has going for it.

I am open minded to lots of things and accept lots of things, but this is not one of them. On top of it all, it's just too damn long. It gets so drawn out. Even the sex scenes in the film were a yawn fest not to mention made me feel unclean. They didn't feel erotic or artistic, or anything for that matter. However, I did not walk out on this film as I wanted to see it in its entirety. The film overall made me feel dirty, and unclean. All I got out of it was a glorified porn, with a weak story and average acting if not borderline sub-par for most of the cast.

This movie made me feel dirty despite some of the good acting moments and even a few parts in the story. For the most part, 98% crap cannot make up for the 2% of good that I found in this film. Figuratively speaking of course.

I am not saying don't see it. I would recommend you to not, but it is up to you to decide. It is not my place to tell someone what they can and cannot do or watch what they like. Make the choice for yourself. Take this review as a recommendation, I would advise against seeing it. But ultimately the choice is yours. Make your own opinion. My opinion should never dictate any readers decision.

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