An essay by Dr. David Denny on Lars von Trier’s film Meloncholia appears in the book Cinematic Cuts, published by SUNY Press in May 2016.
In Cinematic Cuts, scholars explore the philosophical, literary and psychoanalytic significance of film endings. They analyze how film endings engage our fantasies of cheating death, finding true love, or determining the meaning of life. Films by Akira Kurosawa, Lars von Trier, Joon-Hwan Jang, Claire Denis, Christopher Nolan, Jane Campion, John Huston and Spike Jonze, among others, are discussed.
Editor Sheila Kunkle writes: “Several of our contributors consider films that end with a disturbing and radically violent act in a way that reorients our political critique of patriarchy, colonialism and capitalist ideology. … David Denny’s essay on Lars von Trier’s Meloncholia traces the film’s unique narrative structure and its romantic aesthetic to find that Justine’s acceptance of both her impending doom and the planet’s ultimate destruction is heroic.”
David Denny teaches communication, media and culture at Marylhurst University. He has published on the intersection of critical theory, psychoanalysis, film and politics, including journal articles in The International Journal of Žižek Studies and Theory and Event. He is also co-editor of the forthcoming book, Lars von Trier’s Women (Bloomsbury Press, November 2016).