UTG’s 31 Days Of Halloween: ‘Nymphomaniac’

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Of all the holidays celebrated worldwide, no single day is more loved by the UTG staff than Halloween. With the arrival of the year’s best month, the time has finally come to begin rolling out a plethora of features and special announcements we have prepared in celebration of our favorite day, including the one you’re about to read.

Now in its third year, 31 Days Of Halloween is a recurring feature that will run throughout the month of October. The hope and goal of this column is to supply every UTG reader with a daily horror (or Halloween-themed) movie recommendation that is guaranteed to amplify your All Hallows’ Eve festivities. We’ll be watching every film the day it’s featured, and we hope you’ll follow along at home.

[Warning: the material within is likely NSFW]

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Day 6: Nymphomaniac (2014)

There are lots of different types of scary. There are jump scares, which are mostly noted with a character bending over or moving a mirror only to reveal the villain when they return to their previous position. There are atmospheric scares (when the setting is just so creepy you know something is coming), and there is even a whole new category: gore scares, where the fear comes from seeing something disgusting done to the body (or at least what is left of it). When Nymphomaniac came out earlier this year it brought on a whole new type of scary, however, and this new scary comes from the sheer uncomfortable realism of the sexual theme.

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Nymphomaniac stars Charlotte Gainsbourg as Joe and the films (there are two parts) chronicle her sexual life as she retells it to Stellan Skarsgard who has never known the touch of a woman and claims to have no interest in sex in any way.

What keeps this film moving along nicely (as nicely as it can progress anyway) is that Skarsgard’s character calmly discusses things related to Joe’s stories he has in his small and plain apartment. For example, one of the first stories Joe tells him is about her and her friend having a sexual competition on a train and he relates it to fly fishing; more specifically a book he has on the subject.

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By the time we get to the second movie, things get dark. Joe’s stories go from lighthearted and almost playful to mind-shatteringly real. Each chapter brings on more sexual dysfunction and it is right in your face (in the worst ways). The sheer level of discomfort and uneasiness Nymphomaniac brings to the screen is completely unmatched by any movie I have ever seen.

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Scary uncomfortable is a new kind of scary that could only come from a director like Lars von Trier (Meloncholia, Anti-Christ) so thank the gods there is only one director on his level because I do not think the world could (or should) handle films like Nymphomaniac more than every few years. For those interested in seeing the movie(s) you are in luck; both are streaming on Netflix right now. You will probably regret seeing it, though, as it gave me nightmares for a week.

Editorial written by: Justin Proper
Last year’s Day 6 film: Alien

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