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USA: IFC Films
UK: Metrodome Distribution
Cast: Bryce Dallas Howard, Isaach De Bankole, Danny Glover, Willem Dafoe, Michaël Abiteboul, Lauren Bacall, Jean-Marc Barr, Geoffrey Bateman, Virgile Bramly, Ruben Brinkman, Dona Croll, Jeremy Davies, Llewella Gideon, Mona Hammond, Ginny Holder, John Hurt (narrator), Emmanuel Idowu, Eljko Ivanek, Teddy Kempner, Udo Kier, Rik Launspach, Suzette Llewellyn, Charles Maquignon, Joseph Mydell, Javone Prince, Clive Rowe, Chloë Sevigny, Nina Sosanya
Director: Lars Von Trier
Countries: Denmark / Sweden / Netherlands / France / Germany / USA
USA & UK: 138 mins
UK Certificate: 15 contains one scene of strong sex
USA Release Date: 27 January 2006 (Limited Release - New York)
UK Release Date: 3 March 2006
This is the strange, disturbing story of the Manderlay plantation.
Manderlay lay on a lonely plain somewhere in the deep south of the USA. It was in the year of 1933 that Grace (Bryce Dallas Howard) and her father (Willem Dafoe) had left the township of Dogville behind them. Grace's father and his army of villains had spent the entire winter seeking out new hunting grounds in vain, and now they were heading south in one last attempt to find a favourable location in which to take up residence.
By chance their cars stop in the state of Alabama in front of a large iron gate bearing a thick chain and a padlock. Beside the gate, a dead oak tree towers over a heavy boulder with Manderlay hewn in monumental letters into the granite.
Just as Grace, her father and his men are about to leave after a short break and a quick lunch, a young black woman runs up to the car. She knocks on Grace's window. She hammers at the glass in despair.
Ignoring her father's advice to leave others to their own affairs, Grace follows the girl through the gates of Manderlay and there, she finds a group of people living as if slavery had not been abolished seventy years earlier, with white masters and black slaves...
Grace believes that she has a duty to make it up to the slaves for injustices they have suffered at the hands of her kind: 'we brought them here, we abused them and made them what they are', as she argues to her father; and she decides that having liberated Manderlay, she will remain at the plantation until she has seen them through their first harvest.
Her father grudgingly leaves her with four henchmen and a lawyer, warning Grace that he won't be there to pick up the pieces when her plans for the resurrection of Manderlay fall apart...