'Antichrist' wins Nordic Council Film Prize

Lars von Trier's film bows in the U.S. this week

BERLIN -- Writer-director Lars von Trier and producer Meta Louise Foldager have received the 2009 Nordic Council Film Prize for their art house shocker "Antichrist."

The prize, which comes with a $70,500 bursary, is presented annually to a feature film "of cultural value" produced in the Nordic territories. Previous winners include Finnish director Aki Kaurismaki for "The Man Without a Past" (2002) and "Zozo" from Swedish filmmaker Josef Fares.

The 2009 jury praised "Antichrist" as a "wild, visually beautiful and shockingly violent film," that "breaks down the boundaries between inner and outer realities."

"Antichrist" was the love-it-or-hate-it film in Cannes this year. Charlotte Gainsbourg won the best actress gong for her harrowing performance but many critics panned the film for its over the top gore. IFC is bowing "Antichrist" in the U.S. on VOD today and starts a limited release Friday.