A successful international conductor suddenly interrupts his career and returns alone to his childhood village in Norrland, in the far north of Sweden.It doesn't take long before he is ... See full summary »
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A successful international conductor suddenly interrupts his career and returns alone to his childhood village in Norrland, in the far north of Sweden.It doesn't take long before he is asked to come and listen to the fragment of a church choir, which practises every Thursday in the parish hall. Just come along and give a little bit of good advice. He can't say no, and from that moment, nothing in the village is the same again. The choir develops and grows. He makes both friends and enemies. And he finds love. Written by
The famous international conductor Daniel Daréus (Michael Nyqvist) has a heart attack with his stressed busy professional life and interrupts his successful career with an early retirement. He decides to return to his hometown in the north of Sweden, from where his mother left when he was a seven year-old sensitive boy bullied by Conny and other school mates, to live a low-paced life. He buys an old school and is invited to participate in the church choir by the local Shepherd Stig (Niklas Falk), but the reluctant and shy Daniel refuses in the principle. However, he gets involved with the community and feels attracted by Lena (Frida Hallgren), a local woman with a past with the local doctor. His music opens the hearts of the members of the choir, affecting their daily life: the slow Tore (André Sjöberg) has the chance to participate in the choir; Inger (Ingela Olsson), the wife of Stig, releases her repressed sexuality; Gabriella (Helen Sjöholm) takes an attitude against her abusive and violent husband; the gossiper and frustrated Siv (Ilva Lööf) opens her heart against Lena; the fat Holmfrid (Mikael Rahm) cries enough against the jokes of the businessman Arne (Lennart Jähkel); even Daniel starts loving people and Lena as the love of his life. When they are invited to participate in an important contest in Vienna, Daniel finds his music opening the heart of people making his dream come true.
"Så Som I Himmelen" is a touching and sensitive movie, with a very beautiful story. It is impressive how director Kay Pollak and the screenplay writers have been able to develop a great number of characters in 132 minutes running time. The performances are top-notch, supported by magnificent music score and at least two awesome moments: when Gabrielle sings her song in the concert, and certainly the last concert in Vienna with the audience, jury and everybody participating in the melody, and Daniel making his dream come true. Like in "Teorema", the stranger changes the lives, not of only a family, but of a conservative community. Further, like many European movies, the open conclusion indicates that Daniel actually died, at least in my interpretation, reaching peace with the success of his music. My eyes became wet in these two scenes. My vote is nine.
Title (Brazil): "A Vida no Paraíso" ("The Life In the Paradise")
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