"Heartrending, inspirational, mythical and invigorating..."
Icelandic screenwriter, actor, producer and director Baltasar Kormákur's eight feature film which he co-wrote with Icelandic screenwriter Jón Atli Jónasson and co-produced, is inspired by real events in the life of an Icelandic man named Guðlaugur Friðþórsson and four other men which took place in 1984 on one of the Westman Islands called Heimaey. It premiered in Iceland, was screened in the Special Presentations section at the 37th Toronto International Film Festival in 2012, was shot on locations in the North Atlantic Ocean and is an Iceland-Norway co-production which was produced by producer Agnes Johansen. It tells the story about a fisherman named Gulli who lives in a coastal town and who is few days away from heading out to the sea on a fishing boat called Breki-VE with his crew members.
Finely and engagingly directed by Nordic filmmaker Baltasar Kormákur, this finely paced and somewhat fictional reconstruction which is narrated mostly from the main character's point of view, draws a gripping portrayal of an Icelandic man and the crucial decision he has to make after a boat accident in the North Atlantic Ocean. While notable for it's naturalistic and atmospheric milieu depictions and reverent cinematography by Icelandic cinematographer Bergsteinn Björgúlfsson, this character-driven story depicts a commendable study of character and contains a great score by composers Daniel Bjarnason and Ben Frost.
This dramatic, humorous and modestly existentialistic drama which is set in the Vestmannaeyar in Iceland during a spring in 1984 and where a man ends up in a situation where the deep is below him, the sky above him and his only option is to swim or die, is impelled and reinforced by it's cogent narrative structure, substantial character development and the involving and efficiently understated acting performance by Icelandic actor Ólafur Darri Ólafsson. A heartrending, inspirational, mythical and invigorating true story which is dedicated to Icelandic fishermen.
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