Directed by: Lars von Trier
Starring: Bodil Jørgensen (Karen), Jens Albinus (Stoffer), Anne-Grethe Bjarup Riis (Katrine), Knud Romer Jørgensen (Axel), Nikolaj Lie Kaas (Jeppe), Louise Mieritz (Josephine), Anne Louise Hassing (Susanne), Paprika Steen (Visitor)
Language: Danish (English Subtitles)
Genres: Mental Illness/Depression
Plot – Spoilers:
A woman with a kindly face, Karen is at a restaurant when she encounters a group of mentally disabled people on their day out. She ends up driving back with them, only to discover they’re a bunch of regular folk who don’t want to be normies. Karen spends a couple of weeks with the group who appear to have been together for a while, as they’ve all honed their spassing skills to spectacularly enviable levels. As the days pass, the group’s convictions and their personal stories, including Karen’s, slowly begin to emerge.
The whole act of spassing is to channel the ‘inner idiot’ – something the world apparently needs more of. But mostly, the group uses spassing for their own personal entertainment and to exploit social norms of acceptable behaviour and the discomfort people often experience while around the disabled.
There are times in The Idiots where you will crack up with them, and other times, at them. There are times you’ll find them mean and callous and other times approve of them turning the tables on those that are often at the other end of the receiving end.
Recall watching an interview with Lars von Trier where he said he got the idea from some guy who had a theory that retards were angels – beings from God that were different from humans, as a sort of reminder of what could be.