Last week, Lars Von Trier’s “The House That Jack Built” screened at the Cannes Film Festival. The screening caused quite a stir, with many people feeling nauseous and even more people leaving before the film had even finished. This isn’t the first time this sort of thing has happened, during a screening at the Toronto Film Festival back in 2016, people were apparently fainting and getting sick during a screening of the cannibal film “RAW”. What is unusual, is the PETA is giving the film a big thumbs-up following the debut.
The film follows Jack, a very intelligent serial killer. The story follows the killer over a decade, showing his downfall into becoming a serial killer. As we mentioned before, the film was directed by Lars von Trier, and the film itself stars Matt Dillon, Bruno Ganz, and Uma Thurman .
So you may be wondering how PETA got involved, well that involves a very particular scene in the movie. During his childhood Jack tortures animals, which is actually a very common thread with serial killers at a young age. In one scene, young Jack cuts off the leg of a duckling with a pair of pliers, and it was so horrific that people contacted PETA to complain.
Well PETA looked into the matter and it turns out no ducks were harmed in the making of the film. In fact, PETA is actually celebrating the film for showing the correlation between violence towards animals and mental illness. In a statement released earlier today, Senior Vice President Lisa Lange, talked about the scene:
“Following numerous calls about a scene in Lars von Trier’s film The House That Jack Built in which a young child uses a pair of pliers to cut a duckling’s leg off, PETA has confirmed that the “leg” was created using movie magic and silicone parts. While depictions of gratuitous violence like this may leave viewers sickened, it’s true that serial killers, like the character in the film, often get their start by first torturing animals, making the scene all the more realistic and disturbing.” Lange also added, “PETA is also happy to report that the images of tigers in the movie were from stock footage, yet again proving that there’s no need to use live wild animals in productions, thanks to the many humane alternatives being embraced by filmmakers today.”
So long live the baby ducks, and the movie studios that keep them safe by using CG and stock footage. Of course if you know someone that may be suffering from a mental illness, or you have questions regarding any other symptoms, you can always contact mentalhealth.gov for more information.