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Love true stories, dramas, sci-fis and a good crime or thriller.
(Film til bruk i mediaundervisning som anbefales på grunn av dramaturgisk oppbygning, mediatema, diskusjonsgrunnlag, filmatiske virkemidler og andre sentrale temaer i media.)
The siblings charm you once more, visiting their American relatives
A follow-up on the the hard working siblings Magnar and Oddny which runs a mountain farm in the western part of Norway together, like they've done all their life, since they took over for their parents. This film is about their trip to America.
They are now in their seventies, and their age is take it's toll and their backs are almost humpbacks from all the heavy work on the farm during the years.
In the first film we get to know that they get a letter from family in America, where they've never been. In this follow-up film they are making the trip of their life over the pond.
The siblings charm once more, when they follow up with their American ancestors, and their family relatives living in America. A nice little story, and this film has more to offer than the first, which really didn't tell a story.
A rather tepid and unfunny follow up of a funny film farce
I really enjoyed the Jonas Jonasson novel "The Centenarian Who Climbed Out the Window and Vanished" as well as the following film "The Hundred Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out of the Window and Disappeared".
The film was both as fun as the book, was a big success both in native Sweden as well as in the rest of the world.
The plot is: A year has gone, and the money is spent, when an old bottle of a Russian soft drink makes a stir, because it so good. Already here we lose the interest, and the film is all about a gang of old people, a gang of hoodlums, a Russian daughter and CIA with the Swedish police are all after this soft drink recipe.
Well, to make a long story short, this is just like the first an unlikely black comedy in style of Forrest Gump, though darker and way more stupid, and filled with more stupid humans. Other films it's in class with here would be "Fargo", "One night at McCools", "Seven psychopaths" a.s.o. This film, however, hasn't got a book as a basic script, and this is quite obvious. The film tries to be funny, but simply isn't.
Where the first film three years ago was a good farce, which gave many laughs and the two hours went like one, this is just tepid and feels like it never ends. The audience in the theater only laughed twice in the two hours.
Still there are some great things. The make up is even more brilliant than in the first film, and way better than we've seen in Hollywood films (!). Amazing, once more. Robert Gustafsson, playing Allan, is just 52, but here he looks perfect as 101 years old man. (Well, maybe he looks a young 101, but still it's quite passable.)
Some of the CGI isn't very good, though. Especially the explosions and fires are bad, but it doesn't hurt the story, since it's far from believable anyway. The famous persons portrayed are also quite good.
What annoys extremely again, just as in the first, is the music, which really is Balkan circus music. Extremely annoying! This is the worst bit of the movie.
A pity that a great comedy has got such a lousy follow up.
Supervention II (2016)
Keeps the spirit from the first, but less of a surprise
I didn't expect much from the first Supervention-documentary about modern skiing. I expected it to be both boring and tediously giving too much screen time for spoiled brats. How wrong I was back then. The film was the best skiing film I ever saw, and had both attitude, style, beautiful scenery and makes us understand the souls driven to ski for life. What's more was that we really got charmed both by the personalities and with the joy of life the ski bums actually have.
Supervention was following some skiers, snowboarders and skaters in their love for rehearsal and routine, and their longing for great free- rides and awesome bu dangerous tricks on rails and stairs. Some of the best skiers, even some living legends, in Norway, Sweden, USA and Canada appeared, making it even more interesting.
This follow up does the same, but focuses more on the big stars, a bit to my disappointment. Though my disappointed isn't bit, at the surprise I felt from the first, obviously won't appear here. We know what we get, or at least what we are supposed to get. We meet many of the same stars as we did three years ago. Young Jesper Tjäder now a grown man. We could say they are all three years older, but there's more focus on the really grown up stars like Aksel Lund Svindal and Terje Håkonsen.
The film work is once again excellent, and it stunningly beautifully filmed. The landscapes, mostly Norwegian and Austrian, are often spectacular and the snow is plentiful. Extra care has been put into the music score, with suitable happy music from bands like White Lies, Bigbang, Kongos, Little May, Seinabou Sey, Cape Lion a.s.o.
This film also surely will recruit more snowboarders and skiers, like it or not. It will also make your loved sons and nephews, even daughters risk their lives or at least their teeth or knees in rehearsing and performing stunts, like it or not.
But when you go watching it, don't expect there to be a plot or a climax, because it's all about something else! A couple of stories here, but they are the least interesting, as the matter of fact. Once more, just relax and enjoy!
A tricky poetic mystery of disappearance and loneliness
First of all. Don't watch this if you like your films to be easy, or light explainable. Don't watch it if you are in need for action and "open and shut cases". because this film is neither.
Bobby Peers won the Cannes film festival for his short "Sniffer" which was strange and different. His first feature are the same. Strange and different. This Twin Peaksy story about a lonely man feeling lonely and maybe also depressive thoughts is based upon the factual events of the real illusionist Dirk Ohm which went missing after leaving his car in this very area of Norway. The story about the missing girl in the same area is also a fact. Upon these facts, a fictional story is spun about his thoughts after being saved from his first suicide attempt.
In danger of having misinterpreted the whole thing, this little mystery plays around with you s a viewer. You are drawn into the narrative.
The German illusionist Dirk Ohm, well depicted by August Diehl, is found almost frozen to death in his car in a faltered suicide attempt. At first they tow in his car, and then finds him, after having bashed in the frozen window in the closed car door. After waiting to have it fixed, he stays at the rural Grong Hotel where he pays by entertaining with his illusionist show. This goes well, until he starts reacting to a missing girl, Maria, which the whole community is affected by. Ohm is also drawn into it, like one is with those kind of things.
So the mysteries grow, and Ohm starts believing he not only knows the girl, but that he talks to her. Has he met her. Can he "see" things? More shouldn't be said, but if you find this intriguing, and are not too afraid of watching sow and mystical films, this might be right up your alley.
There are great things in this film, poetically, as well as the film is beautifully shot in a wintery Grong up in the middle of Norway. The acting is good, though I can't help thinking that Maria, played by Danish Sara Hjort Ditlevsen is a miscast. Not because she doesn't play well; she dos. But because her English is obvious Danish-English. And why, when she is supposed to be a Norwegian daughter of Norwegian parents? (Though the mother is played by Swedish Alexandrra Rappaport.) I Find this the film's weakest point.
I also think the film could have earned a lot on building more up on the mysteries, being a bit more like Twin Peaks, and less poetic. I guess a lot of watchers will hate the film for it's tenderness and understatements. The humour isn't that funny, the violence isn't that violent, the mystery isn't that mysterious and so on. Everyone is too kind, too stupid, too odd... well, as I said strange.
I ended up liking the film just as much as I hated it. It's a difficult film both to comprehend and to understand, though it's not difficult to watch or to put your own feelings into.
For most this film will be a love/hate relationship. Either you enjoy, nor you are bored, or you like what you see, though not the entire content.
Sicilian hit-man to finish off lost Finnish love
It's just as implausible and unlikely as the title of this review says. Giancarlo Rosso, a Sicilian hit man, gets a job to kill someone in Finland. His new target is Maria, who'm he have had an affair with a long time ago. Rosso arrives in Helsinki, buys weapons, and finds her apartment empty, except of her brother Martti. Neither speak common language. And there starts the road movie.
This film is very Kaurismäki, which means it's both full of black comedy and an odd look at Italian and Finnish everyday life. Strange as they might be, they are quite normal people. Different as they might be, the hit man and Maria'æs brother, they find each other in a bottle of vodka.
Kaursmäki style the film is not flashy, but slow going noir inspired, held in a bleak Finnish autumn. the film is full of Sicilian orchestral music, as suited any mob movie, and it makes us really wonder how wonderful this both suits the Finnish landscape, and what we sees as Finnish.
Difficult not to like this film, which clocks in on a likable 76 minutes.
Børning 2 (2016)
Entertaining outrage car race comedy
The first Børning-film's last scene promised that we cold expect a second coming on this Norwegian take on a The Cannonball Run, or Need for Speed.
The first film was also a box office hit in native country Norway, with it's silly and down to earth humour. And this follow starts right where the first ends in all ways.
Once again You'll get amazing driving scenes, this time in mid winter, driving from the western coast of Norway all the way through Sweden, Finland and into Murmansk in Russsia. The trip is decided by a dart toss, after a challenge is made. Our "hero" Roy is just out of prison after spending two years for illegal and reckless driving in the first film. He get's good words from traffic police man Philip Mørk, whom Roy promises to keep away from street racing. Roy gets off, starting his new job as a petrol station worker, when he realizes that his daughter has a car loving boy friend, ready to attend a the new street race. And when Roy's divorced wife realizes this there's no way this is acceptable.
Once again the film is beautifully shot film, with great driving scenes, some quite spectacular, mixed with funny scenes and a kind of a cheesy dialog. This script is actually a tad better than for the first film. The persons we love from the first film is back, and so, I'm afraid, is the persons we learned to hate as well. The annoying daughter falls through once again in a scene when she starts crying, but all others does a a good job. A new comic hero is Roy's wife, Ingrid, played by Marie Blokhus, which is really hilarious as a frantic and desperate female.
This film is once again going to be one of the biggest hits in Norway this year. This due to both good marketing, as well as a solid cast of well known Norwegian screen actors as well as a couple of comedians. No doubt they all had fun whilst filming!
The cars this time is a just as broad mix as in the first film, but the film doesn't manages to give just such a fresh car driving impression as the first, neither the same great filming, nor scenic route. But the film is funnier, and serves better gags, weighing up for the weaknesses, and the film once again serves as good entertainment.
If you are able not to take the film too serious, I guess this film will entertain those who love horsepower, loud engines, burn outs, drifting along side with testosterone, bickering, rivalry and stupidity, combined with real humans and real characters.
The technical parts are great, and the CGI is top notch. Enjoy this "Norwegian winter Cannonball run"!
Flaskepost fra P (2016)
The best so far
This is the third, and so far the best, film from Jussi Adler-Olsen's crime novels about the Department Q. The first "Kvinden i buret"/"The Keeper of Lost Causes" (2013) I rated 7/10, and was quite disappointed about the much more convoluted "Fasandreberne"/"The absent one" (2014), which I voted 5/10. Then I'm happy to say that this is a big step back from the last film directed by Mikkel Nørgaard.
Acclaimed Norwegian director Hans Petter Moland has taken over, and made a much more serious and darker Nordic noir.
The film is about a serial killer, acting as a cult leader. He kidnaps two children and demands ransom. But before this the Departemnt Q gets a case with a eight year old strange message found in a bottle. This is the start of an intense hunt.
The acting is superb, and mix with religion makes it very interesting. The film is slightly let down by being a lower budget production, though just from being a classic. it's still a very dark crime thriller.
Carl Morck (played by Nikolaj Lie Kaas) is very depressed and heavy minded. He makes his best role so far here. There is also a very strong acting performance by Pål Sverre Hagen, which does another psychopath here, just as in Moland's incredible "In order of disappearance"/"Kraftidioten". Once again a memorable role.
A well recommended Nordic noir.
A gem of an emotional roller-coaster comedy
I've loved every single one of Sara Johnsen's movies, ever since the first, "Kissed by winter" ("Vinterkyss"). I equally liked "Upperdog" and "All that matter is past" ("Uskyld"), which I all voted 8/10 for. And blimey, "Framing mom" ("Rosemari") is simply equally good!
Though very different form the others, Framing mom is a fresh and funny, yet sore and heartfelt drama-comedy with dark background.
Not to say too much, the film starts off with the bride, Unn Tove, finding nothing less than a baby on the toilet floor in the crappy wedding hotel. 16 years later the girl, >Rosemari, turns up upon her doorstep, in need to find her biological parents. The film has become a funny, touching story about how sex, lies and biology created one of life's beautiful flowers, named Rosemari.
Obviously this is not a certain recipe for a happy story. And the film is basically an emotional roller-coaster. Sometimes beautiful, sometimes raw, sometimes awkward, sometimes hilarious. Great acting and a well written script makes sure for a good time out at the movies.
Laila goody rally steals the show, though debuting Ruby Dagnall is a breath of fresh air as and actor. Tuva Novotny is perfectly cast as Unn Tove, but there is also an actor in addition to these which really amazes. I better not specify that more here, in danger of making a spoiler.
With the fourth 8/10-films in a row, Sara Johnsen is a sure bet whenever she makes a film. Sara Johnsen is at the moment Norway's greatest feature film filmmaker, and I'll look forward to her next outing.
Kongens nei (2016)
Solid about defining choices and moment for Norwegian history
Erik Poppe's history depiction "The King's Choice" (original title "Kongens nei") is about the Norwegian royal King and governments reaction to being invaded by Hitler-Germany on the 9th of April 1940.
Erik Poppe has made the brilliant "Trouled water", "Hawaii Oslo", "Schpaaa" and "A thousand times good night", but has outdone himself here, maybe only equaled by "Troubled water". The script is based upon the history telling book by Roy Jacobsen, and is written by Norwegian novelist and re-known script writer Harald Rosenløw-Eeg.
The film depicts what happened in the of the most defining days of the Norwegian democracy, where the Danish born king, after 35 years after being chosen as the King of Norway after his arrival in 1905, when Norway decided to become a kingdom. We also follow the Norwegian government, and how the military reacted to the shock of being invaded by the Third Reich power.
I must say that this film simply could not be depicted more correctly. Except for the King and the Crown prince actually was driven in a newer DeSoto, which only war nerds and aficionados would know, this is painstakingly accurate.
The film is no action movie, but a historic drama, and as such it fulfills my expectations as the best Norwefian war movie to date. Though the film has some action filled sequences, the main thing is the choices that has to be made which defines this drama. And not only the King's choice, but also the when fie was to be called against the war ships and the German troops in their chase of the king. The troubled government which not at all were able to show the same determination as the king, and so on. Many difficult choices.
The film isn't at all afraid of dwelling at these choices, and this makes my day. The film making is really heartfelt, and the instruction of the actors are superb. Danish actor Jesper Christensen is simply jaw-dropping in his role as King Haakon the 7th, and Anders Baasmo Christensen isn't far behind in his role as Crown Prince Olav. However, Austian actor Karl Markovics is simply stunning as Kurt Bräuer. And I could go on. Many great roles! Poppe is a criminally great instructor and director.
And it would have been a catastrophe of epic proportions if this film had taken short cuts. Thank God they didn't. The film is not only accurate and defining history telling, it's also a mile stone in Norwegian cinema and film history.
Beautifully filmed story about abnormality
I didn't have huge expectations for the film, which is based upon the internationally acclaimed novel by the Norwegain novelist Erik Fosnes Hansen by the same name, directed and scripted by Norwegian Vibeke Idsøe. Idsøe has formerly been best known for her family films and an O.K. comedy, but this is by far her best film to date. The film offers both a great story, beautiful photographed scenes, good film music and great production values and good acting.
Eva Arctander is born while her mother dies at home on a train station in a small town in Norway. The little girl is covered with hair all over her body, much to her fathers shame. We follow her upbringing as well as later life, having to cope with the abnormality of being "dressed" as an animal.
The film functions on several levels, and has been criticized for not having a sharp enough edge. I think that's a load of b.s., and I find it rather relieving that the film is not full of bullying or nastiness. We've seen all that before.
the film is simply beautifully shot by danish cinematography master Dan Laustsen, known from films like Headhunter, I am Dina, The Possession...* Combined with a perfectly made musical score, I found the film a delight to watch on the big screen.
The film is very much a Scandinavian project, with many Danish actors, a brilliant Swedish second lead (Rolf Lassgård) and a couple of good Norewgian female central actors in all the different versions of Eva (as 7, 14 years old and grown up). There are also many good minor roles.
Though I must admit I found a couple of weaknesses. That comes to the believably language spoken by the child as a 7 year old. It was far too advanced. It didn't sound right, and was quite awkward. There's also a couple of other glitches in the dialogues, and Idsøe should have had a script consultant removing this, so that the film would have that weakness. I also was a little bit annoyed by the CGI used on Eva as a baby. Later on, this is perfect.
But when it comes to all, I found the film both interesting and entertaining. And well worth your time!