Medea is a personal interpretation of the old Greek tragedy by Euripides. Here the old legend is transferred from ancient Greece to the Dark Ages of the North.


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Lars von Trier’s Medea is a personal interpretation of Euripides’ tragedy, based on a screenplay written by none other than Carl Theodor Dreyer. Von Trier retained Dreyer’s sparse dialogue and created a timeless setting of shimmering marshlands and gloomy subterranean passageways in which Medea struggles for herself and her children, but is finally pushed into taking her hideous revenge for Jason’s betrayal, killing Glauce, Glauce’s father, and then, on a desolate, windswept plain, her own children—whom Jason loves so dearly.

After shooting finished, Lars von Trier explained that “I have been in constant telepathic contact with Carl Theodor Dreyer. He gave the project his approval, though without much enthusiasm”.

The cast includes actors familiar from recent von Trier masterpieces, particularly Udo Kier as Jason, Henning Jensen as Creon, Baard Owe as Aigeus, and Solbjørg Højfeldt as the Nurse.

Director Lars von Trier
Produced by DR
Duration 76 min.
Year of Production 1988
Original Title Medea