Swedish director Jan Halldoff's groundbreaking masterpiece "Klippet" has been called a road movie. Indeed, it is possibly the first Scandinavian film in this genre and definitively also the best one so far. To use such a narrow cathegory to describe this film is unjust, though.
In earlier films, Mr Halldoff has shown his virutosity as a director of comedy, drama, tragedy et cetera. In "Klippet" he transcends all previously known genres. As he stretches the formal rules of film making to their limits he somehow also manages to root the narrative structure in the familiar grooves of genre film.
"Klippet" is a veritable tour de force by the grand old man of Swedish auteurs, the true heir of Mauritz Stiller, Ragnar Frisk, and Ingmar Bergman.
The plot in "Klippet" focuses on a small community of artists: painters and composers. They are all brilliant but unsuccesful and makes their living as truck drivers, thus carrying on an old Swedish tradition of blue collar-avant gardists. Some members of this tightly knit band finds themselves becoming involved with the organized crime scene in Finland - and making a lot of money. Tensions soon develop between the old friends and their increasing greed culminates in the tragic death of the youngest member of the band. This becomes a turning point as each individual has to face the unavoidable conflict between wordly success and the demands of art making. In a deeply moving finale Halldoff reaffirms his - and our - faith in the power of Art. Art with a capital "A" that is.
"Klippet" also contains some beautiful, original music by Swedish composer Mats Rådberg - well worth listening to in its own right.
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