Dogme 95

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Dogme 95 is a movement in filmmaking developed in 1995 by the Danish directors Lars von Trier and Thomas Vinterberg. This movement is sometimes known as the Dogme 95 collective. The goal of the collective is to instill a sense of simplicity in filmmaking, free of postproduction modifications and other gimmicks. In order to further this goal, von Trier and Vinterberg developed a set of 10 rules that a Dogme film must conform to. These rules, referred to as as the Vow of Chastity, are as follows:

  1. Shooting must be done on location. Props and sets must not be brought in (if a particular prop is necessary for the story, a location must be chosen where this prop is to be found).
  2. The sound must never be produced apart from the images or vice versa. (Music must not be used unless it occurs where the scene is being shot).
  3. The camera must be hand-held. Any movement or immobility attainable in the hand is permitted. (The film must not take place where the camera is standing; shooting must take place where the film takes place).
  4. The film must be in colour. Special lighting is not acceptable. (If there is too little light for exposure the scene must be cut or a single lamp be attached to the camera).
  5. Optical work and filters are forbidden.
  6. The film must not contain superficial action. (Murders, weapons, etc. must not occur.)
  7. Temporal and geographical alienation are forbidden. (That is to say that the film takes place here and now.)
  8. Genre movies are not acceptable.
  9. The film format must be Academy 35 mm.
  10. The director must not be credited.


The first of the Dogme films was Vinterberg's 1998 film Festen, known in English by the title The Celebration. Festen was highly acclaimed by many critics, and won the Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival that year. Von Trier's first Dogme film, The Idiots was less successful. Since those two original films were released, other directors have participated in the creation of Dogme films.

For more information, see http://www.dogme95.dk