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Julia has lived with the guilt of her son's disappearance for 21 years. As she returns to her childhood home on Öland, old truths and lies are stirred up. Who can she trust, and what happened to her 5-year old son?
Thomas W. Gabrielsson
The film is based on a true occurrence in Sweden in 1988. A Finish couple murdered a young boy and his parents when they prevented the theft of the son's bicycle. The film tries to describe the relationship between the dominant Jari, who calls himself "Il Capitano", and his more mature "soldier" Minna, that develops into mutual dependence. Written by
Robert Stroetgen <email@example.com>
With long takes, sudden flashbacks and alternate perspectives, Jan Troell, one of Scandinavia's most remarkable directors, starts off his ninth feature film by telling the background story leading up to a triple homicide that took place during a summer night nearby a cemetery on the 3rd of July 1988 in Åmsele, Sweden. Jan Troell's examining reconstruction follows the life story of a juvenile rebellion and the doomed romance between him and his more grounded girlfriend who involuntarily becomes his accomplice.
Earlier films like Arthur Penn's "Bonnie and Clyde" (1967) and Terrence Malick's "Badlands" (1973) may come to mind when reading about this film, but "Il Capitano" is a quite different film and a far more realistic portrayal of romance leading to crime. Two converging psychological studies of character that goes very closely into the mind of the anti-hero male character and his subdued girlfriend stand at the center of this Sweden-Finland-Germany co-production, an acute reconstruction, which was awarded with the Silver Bear at the Berlinale in 1992 for best director. Jan Troell and his co-writers Göran Setterberg and Per Olov Enquist has divided the story into chapters and tells it through a highly efficient non-linear narrative that increases the unpredictability. The naturalistic and bleak milieu depictions, the distinct cinematography and the ominous music elevates the poignant atmosphere in this character-driven thriller which is convincingly acted by Maria Heiskanen and Antti Reini who where reunited seventeen years later in Jan Troell's enchanting "Everlasting Moments" (2008).
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