Posts Tagged ‘Danish Film’

Antichrist – Minute Movie Review

Montag, September 6th, 2010

Review:

After the loss of their only child, Charlotte Gainsbourg is overcome by grief while her husband Willem Dafoe, a therapist, decides that he himself should help her. They go to a secluded cottage in the woods where things quickly get out of hand as her delusions begin unhinging their life. Brilliantly acted, perfectly filmed, the film is one of the most abhorrent films I have ever seen. Brutal and unrelenting, the film is anything but a pleasure to watch. But the story, the mythology and the themes make it worthwhile – and give you plenty of opportunity to muse about the film afterwards, even though what you really want to do is purge your mind of the images.

Random Observations:

Antichrist at the IMDb

Lars von Trier said that he tried to make a horror film with this, but ultimately failed. As I see it, however, he made a much more horrifying film than any of those so-called horror films today. Saw XVII or whatever they may be called.

Co-produced by just about every country in Europe (Denmark, Germany, France, Sweden, Polen and Italy, to be precise), set in the US, and filmed in my home state, Nordrhein-Westfalen.

I’ve wanted to delve into Lars von Trier’s work for a long time, but I’m not sure whether this was the right starting point. Especially since the film does not even follow the Dogme 95 rules. At least I sincerely hope it doesn’t.

Personally, I found the opening sequence, set to a beautiful piece by Georg Friedrich Händel (‘Lascia ch’io pianga’ from the opera Rinaldo), much worse to bear than any of the psychological and physical torture and mutilation later on.

I briefly considered making this Lars von Trier Week, but I really need an easy comedy now.

I Kina spiser de hunde – Minute Movie Review

Donnerstag, April 29th, 2010

Review:

In China They Eat Dogs is an action comedy crime film, a genre that has been made popular by Quentin Tarantino. And Tarantino’s influence can’t be denied in this story of an extremely boring bank clerk who stops a robbery and then decides to abandon his boring life by teaming up with his criminal brother to right the wrongs he has done to the poor bank robber. Naturally, this doesn’t work out as intended. The film is a pitch-black comedy that is brutal without apologizing for it, yet often also simply hilarious. Despite it’s American heritage (and even a major character being American), the film is also decidedly European in its honest portrayal of a world that quickly turns surreal.

Random Observations:

I Kina spiser de hunde at the IMDb

Writer Anders Thomas Jensen went on to write international films like Lone Scherfig’s Wilbur Wants to Kill Himself before directing the Danish film Adams æbler (Adam’s Apples).

I really enjoyed the epilogue. It was funny.

The title refers to the fact that in China, they not only eat dogs, but they also think nothing of it. Basically, it means that you should make your own rules. A theme that is extensively explored in the film.

Adams æbler – Minute Movie Review

Mittwoch, August 5th, 2009

Review:

Adam, a Danish Neo-Nazi, is send to Ivan’s church, who specializes in working with hopeless cases. Since Adam claims that his goal in life is to bake a cake, he is put in charge of the apple tree – and “Adam’s Apples” is born. The film is a very strange mix of comedy and drama, a truly unique film that is very hard to describe. It starts off very strong and is littered with incredibly scenes, but it drags a bit in the middle and the resolution at the end is a little to obvious and clean cut to entirely suspend disbelief.

Random Observations:

Adams æbler at the IMDb

Director Anders Thomas Jensen previously won a Short Film Oscar for Valgaften.

Considering how small Denmark is, I’m surprised by how many directors born there I can name. You might also recognize the names Thomas Vinterberg and Lars von Trier.

Minute Movie Review – Kopps

Sonntag, Juni 22nd, 2008

Review:

When the police station in a small Swedish town is about to be closed because there hasn’t been a single crime in ten years, the officers resort to “helping the statistics”. Of course, this has to lead to a disaster. Kopps is in many ways formulaic and predictable, but writer-director Josef Fares tries to avoid the typical clichés, sadly sacrificing some believability in the process. Nevertheless, Kopps is a great Swedish comedy that leaves you guessing until the end.

Random Observations:

Kopps at imdb.com

This is the second film by Josef Fares I’ve seen, the other being his other comedy Jalla! Jalla!, which also stars his brother Fares Fares. They were born in Lebanon before moving to Sweden and Jalla! Jalla! deals with the issues Muslims have in European society, thus actually being not only funny, but also thought-provoking. If you are only going to watch one Josef Fares film this year, make it that one.

The film pays homage to a number of classic movies, mostly action and/or cop films. But the best reference is made towards Back to the Future.