Breaking the Waves 1996 Criterion CollectionGreat movies shake you up. They make demands on you, challenge your beliefs, force you to look at things through another person's eyes. "Breaking The Waves," the first English-language film from Danish director Lars von Trier, is transcendent filmmaking. Using a tragic love story as his framework, Von Trier takes an unflinching look at the chasm between the rational and the spiritual sides of our lives. A haunting, brutal fairy tale, this masterfully detailed character study is uncompromising and emotionally exhausting. It's a great movie.

Set in the early 70's, the North Sea oil boom brings outsiders to a remote Scottish community on the Isle Of Skye. Bess, a "simple-minded" local, meets and falls in love with Jan, a Norwegian oil-rigger. Their impending marriage disturbs the religious community, a group of Calvinists whose severe fundamentalism makes the Amish seem like anarcists by comparison. Bess' determination wins out, though, and life with her new husband becomes a blissful journey of personal and sexual discovery for the naive young woman.
Eventually, Jan has to return to the rigs, leaving a devastated Bess begging God to bring her husband home. When an industrial accident sends Jan back, paralyzed from the neck down, Bess is convinced the disaster was caused by her prayers. She stays by her husband's side, acutely depressed and desperate to atone. Then, under the influence of drugs and despair, Jan makes an startling request of his wife that sends her spinning madly on a frenzied and shocking quest of self-sacrifice in the name of love.

Director: Lars von Trier
Cast: Emily Watson, Stellan Skarsgard, Katrin Cartlidge, Jean-Marc Barr, Udo Kier
Country: Denmark, Sweden, France, Netherlands, Norway, Iceland, Spain
Genre: Drama, Romance

BD50 + 2xDVD9 | AVC 1080p, NTSC | 02:39:21 | 45.4 Gb + 14 Gb
Language: English
Subtitles: English

Extras:

Trailer - original theatrical trailer for Breaking the Waves. In English, not subtitled. (2 min, 1080i).

Cast Interviews -
1. Emily Watson - in this new video interview, the British actress discusses her contribution to Breaking the Waves, some of the challenges she faced during the shooting of the film, her character (as well as her interactions with Katrin Cartlidge), Lars von Trier's directing methods, the film's success at the Cannes Film Festival, etc. The interview was conducted exclusively for Criterion in London in 2013. In English, not subtitled. (18 min, 1080p).

2. Stellan Skarsgard - in this new interview, the acclaimed Swedish actor discusses his numerous collaborations with Lars von Trier, his directing methods and the important roles women have in his films, Breaking the Waves and the character he plays, etc. The interview was conducted exclusively for Criterion in Stockholm in May 2013. In English, not subtitled. (13 min, 1080p).

3. Adrian Rawlins - in this video interview, actor Adrian Rawlins, who plays Dr. Richardson, discusses Lars von Trier's directing methods and his contribution to Breaking the Waves. The interview was produced in 2004 by Electric Parc. In English, not subtitled. (3 min, 1080i).

Stig Bjorkman - in this new video interview, filmmaker and critic Stig Bjorkman discusses the evolution of the visual style of Lars von Trier's films (and the impact of the Dogme movement), the shooting of Breaking the Waves, etc. The interview was conducted exclusively for Criterion in New York in May 2013. In English, not subtitled. (11 min, 1080p).

Selected-Scene Commentary - selected-scene audio commentary featuring director Lars von Trier, editor Anders Refn, and location scout Anthony Dod Mantle. In English, not subtitled. (48 min, 1080p).
1. Cutting on emotion
2. Primitive visual effects
3. Mantle's funeral
4. Violent time cuts
5. All Bible bashers at heart
6. Rage at test screenings
7. Directing via video link

Emily Watson's Audition - presented here is archival footage from Emily Watson's audition for Breaking the Waves, with an optional audio commentary by director Lars von Trier. In English, not subtitled. (3 min, 1080i).

Deleted and Extended Scenes - four deleted and extended scenes with optional audio commentary by director Lars von Trier, editor Anders Refn, and location scout Anthony Dod Mantle. In English, not subtitled.
1. Deleted Scene 1 (4 min, 1080i).
2. Deleted Scene 2 (3 min, 1080i).
3. Extended Scene 1 (4 min, 1080i).
4. Extended Scene 2 (2 min, 1080i).

In Memory of Katrin Cartlidge - presented here is a deleted scene which was selected by director Lars von Trier to serve as a tribute to the late actor. In English, not subtitled. (2 min, 1080i).

Cannes Film Festival Promotional Clip - in 1996, the Cannes Film Festival requested that competing directors prepare short previews of their films to be shown on opening night. Presented here is the short promotional clip director Lars von Trier prepared for Breaking the Waves. In English, not subtitled. (1 min).

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