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Watch: Philosopher Slavoj Žižek Explains Why Lars Von Trier’s ‘Melancholia’ Is “Profoundly Optimistic”

Watch: Philosopher Slavoj Žižek Explains Why Lars Von Trier's 'Melancholia' Is "Profoundly Optimistic"

If you know someone in a university who is studying for some kind of liberal arts degree, chances are they’ve mentioned Slavoj Žižek. To call him “popular” wouuld be overstating it, but as far as contemporary philosophers go with name recognition, he’s one of the few that actually have it. Entertaining, and yes, thought provoking, Žižek has often viewed/used pop culture and social/political changes to explore deeper meaning, so naturally, he has an opinion about Lars Von Trier‘s downer “Melancholia“….or is it a downer?

Speaking with Big Think, Žižek explains why Justine’s acceptance of death in the face of the impending end of the world is a “profoundly optimistic” thing. It’s certainly an interesting way to read the film, so check out his thoughts below. Agree or disagree? Let us know in the comments section and if you like what you hear from Žižek be sure to check out the documentaries “The Pervert’s Guide To Cinema” or “Examined Life.” [Set Yourself Aflame]

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Optimistic, pessimistic doesn't really matter Melancholia was one of the worst movies I have ever had the displeasure of viewing. Von Trier's characters acted in ways that were completely unbelievable. The only redeeming element of the movie were some beautiful visuals that only slightly distract the viewer from the hollow characters.

Skip Melancholia and see Another Earth instead.


Actually, I think the real reason for the heroine's lack of despair (it's hardly optimism) is that people suffering from depression are much better able to handle terrible circumstances. Beautiful film though.

tyrannosaurus max

haters gonna hate.
Slavoj gonna keep doin' his thing.
More power to him.

Stevo the Magnificent

Zizek is a disgusting little troll of a leftie nut-job, this is a guy who actually DEFENDED the killings of the French Revolution as an exercise in democracy… no wonder Hitler had such a low opinion of Slavs!


Slavoj Zizek is nothing but an intellectual scam artist, don't give him any publicity.


100% agree,. Detachement, acceptance, peace of mind, Lovelife!
Best movie ever!

Whoa, Watch The Excess Saliva, Dude

God, this guy is worse that standing near the guy who writes for Bleeding Cool. Gotta get an umbrella or a windbreaker for when he talks.


This guy is nonsense.

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