Dancer in the Dark

Had the Academy chosen to nominate Björk for Best Actress this year, I would’ve had a major dilemma choosing between her and Julia Roberts for the award. Directed by Lars Von Triers (Breaking the Waves), this movie isn’t for everybody, but it certainly knocked me on my ass. Björk plays an immigrant who is slowly going blind, working a hazardous job at a factory. She’s infatuated with Hollywood musicals, and her daydreams often lead to full-blown musical productions throughout the film. While the film employs a documentary-type feel during the dramatic passages, the musical numbers are done with tripods and steadicams—a brilliant tactic. Much of the film is dark and uncomfortable, but Björk makes it all worthwhile. Unfortunately, she’s pledged to never make a movie again, because she detested the experience. Here’s hoping someone talks her out of it, because she’s an actress of great power.