Lars Von Trier's Trump-inspired horror sparks mass walkout at Cannes

But even by his standards, his latest movie, "The House That Jack Built", managed to alienate enough people to prompt more than 100 walkouts and simultaneous groans at its premiere at the Cannes Film Festival on Monday night. Advance word on the film suggested that it would feature scenes of sadistic violence and brutality, with Cannes director Thierry Fremaux saying that it featured "a subject so controversial" that it could only appear in an out-of-competition slot at the festival.

One viewer was left shocked by the scene where Dillon mutilates children.

It will be Von Trier's first appearance in Cannes since Melancholia in 2011, when the director's jokes about "sympathizing with Hitler" got him temporarily banned for the festival. After the director stated that the film would be his "most violent yet", it seemed he made good on his promise as the first trailer of the film did little to calm the nerves of audience members.

The film itself focuses on the story of the character "Jack" - who is portrayed by Matt Dillion - and his development as a serial killer.

Showbiz 411's Roger Friedman was one of the walkouts, calling The House That Jack Built a " vile movie.

One reportedly said to Kyle Buchanan of New York Magazine: "He mutilates Riley Keough, he mutilates children. and we are all there in formal dress expected to watch it?".

Trailers for the film were also released following its debut at Cannes. We experience the story from Jack's point of view.

Lars Von Trier is a cinematic enfant awful, continually provoking the medium's established narrative and stylistic tropes in favour of a more transgressive viewing experience.

The House That Jack Built will premiere at Cannes and awaits US distribution.

One thing's for sure, Dillon is magnificent in a very courageous role to take on - he may even be at a career best as Jack, but a stand-out performance is such a film that will be so lambasted over the coming moths leading to release, it'll be interesting if any recognition comes its way.

Personally, it's hard to put much belief in those who walked out.

  • Jacqueline Ellis