What weighs toward the decision to ignore the gravity change?

What weighs toward the decision to ignore the gravity change? - Thoughtful man talking to upset woman on couch

Melancholia is a realistic "what-if" science fiction, set in roughly the time we live in. The whole plot is centered around the concept of a planet approaching Earth. Being what it is, why would they choose to ignore the effects of gravity as the planet approaches?

The moon is a relatively small satellite and is quite far from the Earth, but still it makes a noticeable difference to the tide. Now, think of a big planet approaching...

If you stop for a second and really consider the effect it would have on Earth's gravity. It would probably have freed up a whole lot of Earth's mass on the side that it was approaching, such that the surface of our planet and much more beneath would have been ejected from the atmosphere and drawn to the approaching planet. Or, in the very least, gravity would have greatly decreased.

So, how come they didn't even explore a grand finale where the characters are ejected?

I found it terribly unrealistic. Was it a choice of saving on special effects? Didn't the people involved in production even consider the physics of it? Are there interviews done with them surrounding this issue? Or, is it a non-issue as far as entertainment is concerned (i.e. it's not relevant in this movie/genre)?

Best Answer

I think your presumption that the film portrays realistic sci-fi may be misplaced. The extensive use of symbolism and prologue scenes suggest that it is allegorical. While I usually agree that having authentic situations or plausible science is important, in this film I found it easy to dismiss with that expectation. There is an analysis of the Justine chapter here that offers you another perspective and may help clarify my reasoning.

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What opposes the force of gravity?

FRICTION: Friction is a force that opposes motion. When two objects are in contact, friction is acts in a direction opposite to the motion of the object.

Can gravity be ignored?

It depends on the inertia force on the boundary. In some cases (low inertia force), you can not ignore gravity. Gravitational forces are embedded into the pressure forces, so no negligence.

Does the weight change when gravity changes?

That is, the weight of an object is determined by the pull of gravity on it. Thus, an object's physical weight may change from place to place: if a body weighs 54 kg on Earth, its weight will be just over 9 kg on the Moon, since the Earth's gravitational force is six times stronger than the Moon's.

At what point are you no longer affected by gravity?

As you get farther away from a gravitational body such as the sun or the earth (i.e. as your distance r increases), its gravitational effect on you weakens but never goes completely away; at least according to Newton's law of gravity.

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More answers regarding what weighs toward the decision to ignore the gravity change?

Answer 2

In similar fashion, we have no explanation of the motive of the Kirsten Dunst's character to crash her own wedding too. We have also seen the slow-motioned flying objects in the prologue already so I do not think Lars von Trier tried to save financially on special effects budget.

I think he tried to focus more on the emotional effect. The sight of the protagonists being swallowed by the approaching blue moon was heartbreaking. Anyway, I guess they being helpless in the air would have achieved the same effect but it was wholly the director's aesthetic choice.

Answer 3

I understand that disbelief must be suspended in any movie, but for realistic value, to ignore the atmosphere being sucked away with the gravity is highly overlooked. We would be dead way before it hit us.

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