Though the Dogme 95 movement caused something of a stir in the film community at the time, the films made under its banner were, to put it mildly, a bit downbeat. Only Lone Scherfig's Italian for Beginners (2002) could lift the fog. Scherfig had a talent for presenting depressing characters in a lighthearted way, and still managed to resolve everyone's problems by the end of the film.
Her film was a Hollywood ensemble comedy wrapped up in an enjoyable, intelligent art house package. As a result, it grossed over $4 million; the second highest grossing film in the series was The Celebration (1998), which made just over $1 million. None of the rest even made it that far. Working within the Dogme manifesto required Scherfig to follow ten specific rules, which included not making a period piece or genre film, using only props found on the set, using only natural sound (music must emanate naturally from the set), using hand-held cameras, natural light, no special effects, etc. The idea was that the rules would restore "truth" to cinema.