Lars von Trier: I ‘sympathize’ with Adolf Hitler

Director Lars von Trier (right) with “Melancholia” stars Kirsten Dunst (middle) and Charlotte Gainsbourg.

Two years ago, when he presented “Antichrist” in Cannes, Lars Von Trier said he was “the best film director in the world.” No one cared too much. The controversy had been more in his movie, which showed Charlotte Gainsbourg plunging a pair of scissors between her legs. The actress ultimately won the best actress award.

But yesterday, the Danish director pushed the envelope further by saying that he sympathized “a little bit” with Adolf Hitler. After declaring he had German roots, he added: “What can I say? I understand Hitler. I think he did some wrong things, yes absolutely, but I can see him sitting in his bunker in the end.”

Later the former Palme d’Or winner for “Dancer in the Dark” explained that Hitler “is not what you would call a good guy, but I understand much about him and I sympathize with him a little bit. I’m not for the Second World War, and I’m not against Jews,” he added, before criticizing Israel, then joking that he was a Nazi. Von Trier’s comments were suddenly published all over the web, with some festival goers saying that the Danish director “pulled a Galliano,” referring to the fashion designer dismissed from Dior after allegedly making anti-Semetic remarks. Later during the day, Von Trier published a statement, writing that “he’s sorry if his words have hurt anyone.” The festival organizers accepted the apologies, explaining Cannes is “not a theater or a tribune for such declarations.”

Oh, and what about “Melancholia,” his new movie presented in competition? The film, starring Kirsten Dunst, Kiefer Sutherland and Gainsbourg, has a gorgeous opening sequence in slow motion, but then the movie became terribly boring and predictable, if you ask us. Is that why he needed to start a little controversy?


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