The film's star Matthew Mcconaughey doesn't mind how people react. "I would say, real simply, anyone has as much right to boo as they do to ovate." In the film, McConaughey plays Arthur, a man who walks into Japan's notorious Aokigahara Forest to kill himself, for reasons that are discovered through flashbacks. Costars include Naomi Watts as his wife and Ken Watanabe as a suicidal man he meets in the woods.

Matthew McConaughey stars in Gus Van Sant's The Sea Of Trees

McConaughey enjoyed Van Sant's loose approach to the narrative. "I like a lot of his work and we just came together on this one," he says. "It's hands down an exceptional script. It moved me. Rarely do I stand up and have to walk around and yell at a script on the page as I read it. I cried at this script. I was mad at it. I was screaming. That doesn't happen very often."

And he found shooting the film just as challenging. "There were many times in the making of this movie when I thought, 'I don't know what I'm doing,'" he says. "And then I thought, 'Welcome to Arthur!" He doesn't have any answers either."

McConaughey admits that taking on such a complex role required quite a lot of preparation. He needed to fully understand the character before he could become him. "A lot of this was trying to define that relationship between Naomi's character and my character", he says. "So a point of reference was Who's Afraid of Virginia Woolf [Edward Albee's fierce play about the breakdown of a marriage]. That was valuable as far as an example of their relationship. I spent time with some different marriage counsellors who deal with these co-dependent relationships. That kind of thing helped a lot."

McConaughey is enjoying his varied movie career, as a provocative film like The Sea of Trees is released in the same year as his true Civil War action-drama Free State of Jones and his voice work in the animated masterpiece Kubo and the Two Strings. But would he ever want to be in a big blockbuster, like maybe a comic superhero movie? "I've read some Marvel and DC scripts and I've talked about working with them on some scripts," he admits mysteriously. "I can't share with with you what they are, or were. But yeah, I've circled some of those. Nothing has been right for me yet. But I'm sure open to it."