Thursday, September 27, 2012
After spending time in class discussing short films I've been thinking a lot lately about what goes into making a short film and what the director is trying to tell the audience-especially in such a short amount of time. The other day while perusing the internet I came across an article about a short film by Lars Von Trier called "En Blomst." Intrigued by the idea of a short film made by one of today's great directors, I decided to check it out. The film runs about 7 minutes long and contains no dialogue. It follows a young boy who plants a seed and nurtures it day to day until it grows into a flower. When the plant finally blooms, the look of contentment on the boy's face is disrupted by the loud sound of two military planes flying by. Suddenly, we see the boy's body laying on the ground with blood coming from his head, indicating he's been shot. Next to his body, the once lively flower is now wilted.
The most amazing thing about this simple film is that Von Trier shot it when he was just 15 years old. It reinforces the fact that true artists have an inherent need to create, at any cost, no matter how old or young a person may be. Another striking thing about this film is highlights the central themes (darkness, death) that continue to be the focus of Von Trier's films. Another theme that stuck out to me was the idea of nature and the cycle of life, as everything that lives, plants and people, eventually die. Nature was also a huge focus of Von Trier's most recent film, Melancholia, so there is another parallel between connecting themes in the director's first and most recent work. Despite Von Trier's openness about using his own anxieties and depression to influence his films, it makes me wonder if most directors have constant themes (perhaps unintentional) that can be noticed in their own films.