Lars von Trier’s new serial killer horror The House That Jack Built is causing quite a stir.
Only days ago, while premiering at the Cannes Film Festival, up to 100 people were forced to walk out of the screening claiming that the content was “vile” and that it “should not have been made.”
Trier, who has made a name for himself with such work, has made a two-and-a-half hour film depicting 12 years in the life of a “highly intelligent” serial killer played by Oscar nominee Matt Dillon. Set in 1970s and 1980s Washington, Von Trier has described the film as celebrating “the idea that life is evil and soulless” but has been described as ‘murder porn’ by some critics. Some went as far as saying that the Danish writer-director had “gone too far” with his latest effort.
However, Trier remains undeterred by the criticism and, in stark contrast, is concerned that people might not hate it enough: “It’s quite important not to be loved by everybody because then you’ve failed. I’m not sure if they hated it enough, though. If it gets too popular, I’ll have a problem. But the reception seemed just about right, I think,” he said when speaking to Cineuropa. He then added that the walkouts actually “made [him] very relaxed.”
Stars such as Uma Thurman and Riley Keough make appearances in the film which, in complete contrast, also received a six-minute standing ovation followed the screening by some who were able to sit through the full preview.