Lars von Trier has never been known for making movies that are on the nose. In general, you're left to your own devices when it comes to figuring out what the hell is going on in The Kingdom or The Element of Crime. Zentropa is no exception, an inspired but devilishly confusing look at an American who takes a job on a German railroad -- in postwar 1945. Soon enough he's caught up in a mystery, a seeming pawn as a would-be terrorist, stuck between the Americans and the daughter of the railroad-owning magnate -- who winds up dead. Von Trier tries to emulate the work of Hitchcock like Notorious, but the suspense level never rises above a low simmer. Heavy on style (though budget constraints shine through from time to time) but a bit more than short on substance.
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