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Out of Dreyer's shadow? The quandary of Dogme95

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This essay demonstrates the continuing influence of Carl-Theodor Dreyer on the work of the film-makers of Dogme95. It highlights the quandary that is created by this closeness, particularly in the films of Lars Von Trier, and at the same time the radical disparity of style that locates Dreyer and Dogme worlds apart. While the themes have proved more enduring than many suspect, the incompatibility of styles is predictably a wider function of a changing history. Dreyer responded in his work, much of it historical, to the role of religion in the conflicts between tradition and modernity. By contrast, Dogme95 is the product of a new hyper-modern age that stresses speed, movement and immediacy. As such it is confronted with a new cultural agenda and also perhaps the necessity of finding its own original themes. On its ability to supersede the obsessions of Dreyer and earlier Scandinavian cinema, the verdict still remains open.

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: 2002-07-01

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  • The journal aims to provide a platform for the study of new forms of cinematic practice and fresh approaches to cinemas hitherto neglected in western scholarship. It particularly welcomes scholarship that does not take existing paradigms and theoretical conceptualisations as given; rather, it anticipates submissions that are refreshing in approach and exhibit a willingness to tackle cinematic practices that are still in the process of development into something new.��
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