8.0/10
102,770
726 user 138 critic

Dancer in the Dark (2000)

Trailer
2:34 | Trailer
An East European girl travels to the United States with her young son, expecting it to be like a Hollywood film.

Director:

Lars von Trier (as Lars Von Trier)

Writer:

Lars von Trier (as Lars Von Trier)
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Popularity
3,721 ( 199)
Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 35 wins & 48 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Björk ... Selma Jezkova
Catherine Deneuve ... Kathy
David Morse ... Bill Houston
Peter Stormare ... Jeff
Joel Grey ... Oldrich Novy
Cara Seymour ... Linda Houston
Vladica Kostic Vladica Kostic ... Gene Jezkova
Jean-Marc Barr ... Norman
Vincent Paterson ... Samuel
Siobhan Fallon Hogan ... Brenda (as Siobhan Fallon)
Zeljko Ivanek ... District Attorney
Udo Kier ... Dr. Porkorny
Jens Albinus ... Morty
Reathel Bean Reathel Bean ... Judge
Mette Berggreen Mette Berggreen ... Receptionist
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Storyline

1964 in small town Washington state. Selma Jezková, a Czechoslovakian immigrant, and her preteen son Gene live in a rented trailer owned by and on the property of married Bill and Linda Houston, he the town sheriff. Beyond Bill and Linda, Selma has a small group of friends who look out for her, including her primary confidante, Kathy, with who she works, and Jeff who wants to be her boyfriend. Jeff regularly waits outside Selma's workplace long before the end of her shift to drive her home, despite she always refusing in not wanting to lead him on. Her primary job is working on the Anderson Tool factory assembly line, but she does whatever she can to earn money. What only Kathy knows among Selma's friends is that she is slowly going blind, her medical condition being genetic. Selma is barely able to see, just enough to do her job. Her primary reason for moving to the US and for working all the time is to earn enough money for an operation for Gene when he turns thirteen, he who ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

In a world of shadows, she found the light of life. See more »

Genres:

Crime | Drama | Musical

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

An opera was released shortly after that was based on this film, titled Selma Jezková (named after this film's protagonist), written by Poul Ruders. Like this film, it's about a Czech immigrant woman coming to America. Ruders dedicated the role to Ylva Kihlberg, who sang in the premiere. See more »

Goofs

When Bill's police-issue pistol is first seen, it is a revolver (likely a .38 snub). However, when we see his gun again later in the film, it is a semi-automatic M1911, which is not a revolver. While both types of weapons were used by the police of the time, Bill is only mentioned as having one pistol, his standard-issue one from the police force, and is never mentioned as having two handguns. See more »

Quotes

Selma: Clatter, crash, clack, racket, bang, thump, rattle, clang, crack, thud, whack, bam! It's music, now dance!
See more »

Alternate Versions

The original European version had the overture played in dimmed lighting before the curtains opened on the screen. However, Fine Line Features president Mark Ordesky informed director Lars von Trier that such an opening was unfeasible in U.S. theaters, since most American theaters don't have curtains and have electronic projection booths overseen by inexperienced staffers. Thus, von Trier filmed a visual accompaniment to go along with the overture in the U.S. release: a collage of paintings by Per Kirkeby, the artist/husband of producer Vibeke Windeløv. See more »

Connections

Referenced in The Nostalgia Chick: City of Angels (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

In the Musicals, Part 1
Written by Björk, Mark Bell, Sjón Sigurdsson & Lars von Trier
Performed by Björk
Arranged by Björk & Vincent Mendoza
Orchestrated & Conducted by Vincent Mendoza
Produced by Björk & Mark Bell
Mixed by Mark Stent (as Mark "Spike" Stent)
Published by Universal Music, Warp/EMI Music & Copyright Control
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User Reviews

 
My Cinematic Unemotional Streak- Broken!
13 October 2000 | by wentzjw55See all my reviews

This is one of the best movies I have ever seen. I was not familiar with the director's previous work, but had picked up the soundtrack by Bjork and was intrigued.

Selma (incredibly portrayed by Bjork) makes the audience laugh and weep simutaneously just by following her heart. Every character is played flawlessly, and the cinemetography is innovative and dynamic. The musical numbers jump to life in a 'colorized' style, emphasizing the break from the dismal reality of Selma's painfully decaying life.

I will say only this. I hate crying at movies. Yet, as I was driving home, mad at the fact that I was still sobbing uncontrollably, I realized how much I loved this movie.


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Details

Language:

English | German | Czech

Release Date:

6 October 2000 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Dancer in the Dark See more »

Filming Locations:

Arlington, Washington, USA See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$12,800,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$91,612, 24 September 2000

Gross USA:

$4,184,036

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$40,031,879
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby Digital | DTS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »

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