The cargo ship MV Rozen is heading for harbor when it is hijacked by Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean. Amongst the men on board are the ship's cook Mikkel and the engineer Jan, who along with the rest of the seamen are taken hostage in a cynical game of life and death. With the demand for a ransom of millions of dollars a psychological drama unfolds between the CEO of the shipping company and the Somali pirates. Written by
I have just returned from seeing this at the cinema and I thought it was a really good film. I've seen most of the recent clutch of excellent Danish films and I would say this film was as good as any, perhaps with the one exception of The Hunt. I've noticed one reviewer objects to the lack of voice given to the hijackers, demonstrated by their speech not being subtitled. I completely disagree with this being an issue, the film is not about the hijackers, it is about the crew of the ship, the situation they find themselves in, and their relationship with the corporation that owns the ship and is responsible for the ransom that is demanded for the safety of the crew. The film seeks to portray the sense of terror that the crew are going through and arguably the best tool used in the film is the non-translated speech of the hijackers ... we have no idea what they are saying, why they can be calm and friendly one minute and then become furious seconds later for no apparent reason, waving their guns around ... this is exactly the way the crew would have experienced it. What would be the point of letting the audience know what the hijackers were saying if the crew don't understand, bearing in mind the film is trying to put us in their shoes? The CEO of the corporation comes across as stiff and unrealistic to begin with but we are shown at the start of the film that this is how he conducts negotiations, and as the hostage negotiation goes on, his stiff demeanour slowly slips away. The film expertly rackets up the tension, and is one of those films that makes you feel like you're experiencing what the characters are, rather than watching as an audience from afar. It is not a 10/10 classic but it is a very good film and well worth watching.
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