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Harry Munter, a sensitive, kind, appealing man in his twenties, lives with his parents. He's an inventor, a bit of a mystic, maybe a genius, and a good son and grandson. He's offered work in the U.S. But a friend has cancer and the world is changing in ways that provoke profound sadness. Written by
Eileen Berdon <email@example.com>
Pretentious, messy 1960's zeitgeist muddle of wasted talent.
This is the kind of movie that aggravates me because it's a classical-themed story with potential to engage: Young man/bohemian drifter Harry, living with his parents, gives up his professional talent for engineering, including a chance to move to America, to stay with friends and family he cares about.
Made in the late '60s, it's clearly inspired by French New Vave that many a critic obviously deemed poetic/avant-garde. I call it a pretentious, sloppy muddle because it fails frustratingly through unfocused, jumpy storytelling by popping characters in-and-out that have no emotional connection to its audience (but somehow yet finds time for long, pointless scenes). The ludicrous finale with the little boy poking our hero with a ski pole... plus his "spiritual" - well, poorly disguised Christian dream, had me sarcastically laughing and shaking my head.
Is Harry really a talented inventor? Or is he a humanist do-gooder who wastes his gift, because he truly cares for and helps ordinary people instead? There's no way to tell, because I'm not shown or told any of this enough to be convinced. There's so much choppy character interplay that nowhere near underlines its protagonist's increasingly exasperating, dead-pan actions. For that reason, I stop caring - and that's a cardinal sin for any movie (although the airport scenes do hold a bit of dramatic interest).
To me this is bad, nose-in-the-air movie-making that's not even visually compensative enough to excuse its oh-so-apparent zeitgeist artistic ambitions. And is it intentionally filmed at a messy construction site/suburb-to-be to convey any symbolic message? You tell me! I cannot digest that this is seriously considered a classic, top-Swedish movie even today. Hopefully time will catch up and expose it as the dated relic it is!
3 out of 10 from Ozjeppe.
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