6.1/10
352
5 user 6 critic

Misery Harbour (1999)

Oslo, 1932. Espen Arnakke, an up and coming Danish born writer who only writes non-fiction, is constantly butting heads with book critic Johan Hoeg, who has not been impressed by anything ... See full summary »

Director:

Nils Gaup

Writers:

Sigve Endresen, Aksel Sandemose (novel) | 1 more credit »
Reviews
2 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Nikolaj Coster-Waldau ... Espen Arnakke (as Nikolaj Coster Waldau)
Stuart Graham ... John Wakefield
Anneke von der Lippe ... Jenny
Bjørn Floberg Bjørn Floberg ... Johan Hoeg
Knut Husebø Knut Husebø ... Cafe Guest
Espen Haavardsholm Espen Haavardsholm ... Cafe Guest
Anne Krigsvoll Anne Krigsvoll ... Cafe Guest
John Sigurd Kristensen John Sigurd Kristensen ... Cafe Guest
Jeanne Bøe Jeanne Bøe ... Cafe Guest (as Jeanne Bøe Larsen)
Tonja Sitara Sanborn Tonja Sitara Sanborn ... Cafe Guest
Sven Henriksen Sven Henriksen ... Head Waiter
Sturla Berg-Johansen Sturla Berg-Johansen ... Waiter (as Sturla Berg Johansen)
Stig Hoffmeyer Stig Hoffmeyer ... Wilhelm Arnakke
Else Qualmann Else Qualmann ... Amaila Arnakke
Henrik Sloth Henrik Sloth ... Janus
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Storyline

Oslo, 1932. Espen Arnakke, an up and coming Danish born writer who only writes non-fiction, is constantly butting heads with book critic Johan Hoeg, who has not been impressed by anything about Espen since his arrival onto the literary scene in Norway. Upon reflection, Espen realizes that there is some truth to Johan's words, regardless of his arrogant tone, based on Espen perhaps not being true to himself in what he is writing. As such, he decides to give his in-progress memoirs to the one person who he truly does want to impress, Johan's girlfriend Jenny, to read. Those memoirs largely detail him trying to escape from his life: escaping from his small town Danish upbringing where he was expected, as was every other male, to work at the town's ironworks, instead of his want to pursue some sort of schooling; and escaping from the sadistic captain and crew on the Newfoundland bound merchant ship he boarded in escaping from Denmark. He ended up in the fishing town of Misery Harbour, ... Written by Huggo

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Motlys | Norwegian Film Institute

Country:

Sweden | Norway | Denmark | Canada

Language:

Danish | Norwegian | English | Latin

Release Date:

3 September 1999 (Norway) See more »

Also Known As:

Flugten fra Jante See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Angel Films,Arena Film See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Color:

Color
See full technical specs »

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User Reviews

I threw the dices of my life at Dead Mans point
17 August 2002 | by the_oakSee all my reviews

This is a great movie, and ranks with Ofelas as Gaups finest hour. The adaptation of Axel Sandemose`s book En flyktning krysser sitt spor and En flyktning går i land, is very good. The grim houses and people of the village Jante in Denmark, where you have to bend you back and work in the local factory, is well depicted, and it is easy to see why Espen Arnakke, brilliantly played by Coster-Waldau, leaves in the shadow of the night to find himself and to be the man he feels inside that he is. (The words of the Jante law, saying that you shall not think you are better than us, you shall not strive to become something and so on are probably Sandemose`s most remembered today)

It doesnt go as he planned however, jumping off ship at Misery harbour, he is tormented by his ship mate John Wakefield, also very well played by Stuart Graham, and finally he ends up killing him deep inside the canadian forests, where they both get work as lumber jackers.

Arnakke has returned to Scandinavia, now in oslo, where he releases a book about his life. Anyone who with reckless abandon retells his life will get up to date, and that is the only real bulwark in this life. This is what he has learned.

What a great movie. Read the book first if possible.


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