Breaking the Waves
Breaking the Waves (1996)

With Breaking The Waves, director Lars von Trier fashions an often disturbing tale of the singular power of love. Bess (the Oscar-nominated Emily Watson) is a naïve, borderline simple young woman who lives in a Scottish coastal town ruled… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: July 26, 2005
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Rotten Tomatoes™
Critic Score
87%
Flixster
User Score
92%



Critic Score: 87% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews
Christopher Long
Movie Metropolis

Both a ferocious love story and a tale of the triumph of vital individual faith over ossified and corrupt organized religion.

Full review…
Rob Nelson
City Pages, Minneapolis/St. Paul

Von Trier may put his characters and the viewer through the ringer, yet his empathy toward both is unmistakable.

Full review…
Michael Dequina
TheMovieReport.com

The synopsis doesn't begin to do justice to the psychological and emotional complexities of the tale.

Full review…
Matt Brunson
Creative Loafing

Issues of faith, devotion, sexuality and divine intervention are at the center of this daring and provocative piece that placed writer-director Lars von Trier on the international map.

Full review…
Cole Smithey
ColeSmithey.com

Here is a film that makes you feel like you've read the novel, seen the movie, and lived the life of a protagonist more empathetic than any other. You just might need a stiff drink afterward.

Full review…
Jeffrey Overstreet
Looking Closer

The actors are superb. [But] it is the easiest thing in the world to do ... move people by destroying something beautiful.

Scott Tobias
The Dissolve

It's a testament to Emily Watson's astounding performance as Bess that she comes across as more than a von Trier construct; she's a woman of boundless passion, who follows her faith wherever it takes her.

Full review…
Dennis Schwartz
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

A powerful tear-jerker romantic drama that intriguingly also brings religion into the mix.

Full review…
Jon Niccum
Lawrence Journal-World

Unforgettable

More reviews for Breaking the Waves

Flixster Audience Score: 92% Flixster User Reviews
Wildaly M
This was definitely a mesmerizing experience. The film is about so many things but what stood out most to me was the religious subject matter. There's… More
Graham Jones
A disturbing yet beautiful film. Von Trier's masterpiece and the best use of a Rod Stewart song in a movie.
jay nixon
Emily Watson is a wonderful actress, her performance is the only thing this ugly thing has going for it. Mean spirited ultimately pointless film. The ending has… More
Mark Walker
This was controversial Danish director Lars Von Trier's first film in English and also the first in his "Golden Hearts" trilogy in which the… More
Dan Schultz
An honest, super depressing look at a mentally unstable woman (Emily Watson) and her marriage to an oil rig worker (Stellan Skarsgard), and how they deal with… More
Apeneck Fletcher
Breathtaking and heartbreaking, here is a unusual story about a small town woman, thought slow, simple and stupid by her peers, her unbelievably monumental… More

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