8 items from 2016
Thomas Vinterberg has yet to re-attain the heights of his 1998 breakthrough feature, the vehement Dogme inaugurator The Celebration. His focus on the scabrous underpinnings of interpersonal relationships has remained more or less constant, but his treatment of the subject has lost its trenchancy, and films such as Submarino and The Hunt are too willful and calculated in their abrasiveness to achieve genuine insight. Vinterberg co-wrote those later features with Tobias Lindholm (director of the excellent A Hijacking and A War), and the two Danes reunite for The Commune. While surprisingly moderate by the pairing’s standards – no child molestation, lynch mobs, drug addiction, or suicide this time around – their latest attempt at dissecting the human condition ultimately reveals itself to be as cynical and glib as their previous collaborations.
What Vinterberg has always excelled at is realizing despicable male characters, and he again proves his talent with The Commune’s protagonist, »
- Giovanni Marchini Camia
The Commune review: Danish director Thomas Vinterberg returns to his homeland with this triumphant intimate portrait of 1970s Copenhagen.
The Commune review by Paul Heath at the Berlin Film Festival, 2016. The Commune, or Kollektivet to give it its original Danish title, is an extremely solid and involving comedy/drama debuting at the Berlin Film Festival in-competition.
The Commune tells the story of Erik (Ulrich Thomsen), a lecturer in architecture at the local university, his wife Anna (Trine Dyrholm), a TV broadcaster who presents the evening news, and their 14-year-old daughter Freja (Martha Sofie Wallstrøm Hansen). We are first introduced to the trio as they are shown around a massive house in the suburbs of the city of Copenhagen, a house far too big for the three of them, but beautiful in stature, and steeped in personal history. It turns out that the house is Erik’s childhood home and it »
- Paul Heath
A large, chaotically chattering cast, polarities of farcical humor and teariest melodrama, even a rocking-around-the-Christmas-tree singalong: All the elements of a mass heart-sweller are superficially present in erstwhile Dogma 95 rebel Thomas Vinterberg’s return to Danish cinema. Yet “The Commune” finally winds up feeling as communal as “The Celebration” did celebratory, and this time the irony is perhaps not entirely by design. Picking up a domestically fractious ensemble format (plus actors Ulrich Thomsen and Trine Dyrholm) from Vinterberg’s 1998 breakout hit, this 1970s-set study of a mixed-family household experiment gone dramatically awry aims for a bittersweet release of feeling that lands, at its most misjudged points, closer to emotional sadism. Human credibility is the separating factor here: Thanks to the skilled machinations of Vinterberg and his deft players, viewers may feel the pain of these characters rather more deeply than they believe it.
For Vinterberg, this uneven but nonetheless absorbing »
- Guy Lodge
Aside from being an Oscar nominee for Best Foreign Language Film, A War is the work of someone I greatly admire, Danish writer-director Tobias Lindholm. If you saw A Hijacking—a film that deserved the same level of attention as Captain Phillips—or any of the films he’s co-written, like Submarino and the searing Oscar nominee The Hunt, you’ll understand my enthusiasm. In A War he turns his attention to the Danish presence in Afghanistan, focusing on a company commander (Pilou Asbæk, the star of A Hijacking) who tries to bring empathy and humanity to his job, especially when it comes to...
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- Leonard Maltin
As if new films from the Coens and Jeff Nichols weren’t enough, the 2016 Berlin Film Festival has further expanded their line-up, adding some of our most-anticipated films of the year. Mia Hansen-Løve, following up her incredible, sadly overlooked drama Eden, will premiere the Isabelle Huppert-led Things to Come, while Thomas Vinterberg, Lav Diaz, André Téchiné, and many more will stop by with their new features. Check out the new additions below, followed by some previously announced films, notably John Michael McDonagh‘s War on Everyone.
Cartas da guerra (Letters from War)
By Ivo M. Ferreira (Na Escama do Dragão)
Ejhdeha Vared Mishavad! (A Dragon Arrives!)
With Amir Jadidi, Homayoun Ghanizadeh, Ehsan Goudarzi, Kiana Tajammol
Fuocoammare (Fire at Sea) – documentary
Italy / France
- Jordan Raup
London — The Berlin Film Festival has added another nine titles to its competition lineup, including Thomas Vinterberg’s “The Commune,” Danis Tanovic’s “Death in Sarajevo,” Andre Techine’s “Being 17” and Mia Hansen-Love’s “Things to Come.”
Danish helmer Vinterberg is best known for “The Celebration,” which was BAFTA and Golden Globes nominated, and won Cannes’ Jury Prize, and “The Hunt,” which picked up nominations at the Globes, BAFTAs and Oscars.
“The Commune,” whose ensemble cast is lead by Trine Dyrholm and Ulrich Thomsen, centers on the clash between personal desires, solidarity and tolerance in a commune in the 70s. TrustNordisk is handling international sales.
Bosnian director Tanovic is best known for “No Man’s Land,” which won best screenplay at Cannes, and a Golden Globe and an Oscar for best foreign-language film. “Death in Sarajevo,” which is being sold by The Match Factory, is based on a play, “Hotel Europe, »
- Leo Barraclough
Berlin International Film Festival (Feb 11-21) has added nine titles to its Competition line-up, bringing the current total to 14 (the full Competition programme will be announced soon, according to the fest).
The new additions include The Commune, marking the first time Danish director Thomas Vinterberg (The Hunt, Far From The Madding Crowd) has been in Competition at Berlin since Submarino in 2010. The film centres on a Danish commune in the 1970s and will be released in Denmark this weekend (Jan 14).
French director Mia Hansen-Løve (Eden) has been selected with her drama Things to Come, starring Isabelle Huppert as a woman embarking on a new life after her husband leaves her for another woman. The film will world premiere at Berlin.
Another world premiere will be documentary Fire at Sea, capturing life on »
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Michael Rosser)
Director: Thomas Vinterberg
With a career resurgence following his 2012 The Hunt (earning Mads Mikkelsen a Best Actor Award at Cannes as well as snagging an Oscar nod for Best Foreign Language Film), Dogme Godfather Thomas Vinterberg mounted a handsome adaptation of Thomas Hardy’s Far From the Madding Crowd, which enjoyed decent critical reception following a release from Fox Searchlight. His latest, The Commune, co-written by director Tobias Lindholm (whose excellent new feature, A War was Denmark’s official Oscar entry this year), follows a 1970s academic couple who join a commune in Hellrup with their daughter. But things get interesting when the patriarch’s girlfriend also moves in. Though this sounds an awful lot like Swedish auteur Lukas Moodysson’s 2000 feature Together, we’re excited to see Vinterberg’s return with Lindholm (who also scripted Submarino and The Hunt) in a film »
- Nicholas Bell
8 items from 2016
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