9 user 3 critic

The Perfect Human (1968)

Det perfekte menneske (original title)
An elegant and humorous film-in the guise of a serious anthropological treatise-spotlights "The Perfect Human," a model of the modern Dane created by our wishful thinking.


Jørgen Leth


Ole John (script), Jørgen Leth (script)




Cast overview:
Majken Algren Nielsen Majken Algren Nielsen ... The Perfect Woman (as Maiken Algren)
Claus Nissen Claus Nissen ... The Perfect Man


Like Life in Denmark, Good and Evil, and Notes on Love, sensible anthropological study is apparently on the programme, and in Leth's award-winning breakthrough it assumes an elegant, highly amusing form. Spanning a period of 22 years these films revolve skittishly around human nature, and apart from the more documentary Life in Denmark, each has actor Claus Nissen as Leth's artful alter ego. Nissen and Maiken Algren are in an empty white room with only the essential props for each scene. A bed, bedding, a table, chairs. "We are going to see the perfect human being in action", we hear, and Leth's voice puts descriptive or puzzled words to the little actions the film exhibits: the man touches his face investigatively, fills a pipe, cuts his nails, and gets undressed, but he does peculiar things, too: he jumps as if he is weightless, snaps his fingers in strange ways, and dances with exaggerated movements and no music. "Today, too, I had an experience that I hope I shall understand in a ... Written by Anonymous

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Referenced in The Five Obstructions (2003) See more »

User Reviews

Just the sort of "pseudo-intellectual claptrap" that makes the average person hate art films
18 August 2007 | by MartinHaferSee all my reviews

When Jørgen Leth made this short art film, I'm sure he was very pleased with himself as all the intelligentsia agreed that it was brilliant. After all, what's better than a Danish-language film made in black & white that consists of no plot but a man and woman who are non-emotive and do lots of moronic repetitive actions set to a pointless narration? This is the height of greatness for the artsy-fartsy folks who like to watch incomprehensible films and laugh in a self-satisfying way when others say they think the film is a waste of time. While I have seen many, many international films and have done a ton of reviews on IMDb, I just can't see much point to this sort of stuff BUT at the same time I hate the fare that Hollywood has been churning out for some time. Can't you want something different and yet not have it be as banal as DET PERFEKTE MENNESKE? Watch this film only if you have a tremendous need to be self-satisfied or if you actually enjoy being bored out of your mind. Don't say I didn't warn you.

FYI--This banal little film is included on the DVD for THE FIVE OBSTRUCTIONS--a series of updated versions of this film. While not much fun to watch, THE FIVE OBSTRUCTIONS is better and more watchable (though this isn't saying much).

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Official Sites:

Danish Film Institute





Release Date:

14 June 1968 (Denmark) See more »

Also Known As:

O Humano Perfeito See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Laterna Film See more »
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Technical Specs

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