Racial tension is running high in Bergen after a young black asylum seeker dies at the hands of the police. Shortly afterwards, a right-wing politician is targeted by a gunman at a public ...
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Racial tension is running high in Bergen after a young black asylum seeker dies at the hands of the police. Shortly afterwards, a right-wing politician is targeted by a gunman at a public rally, and his wife is fatally wounded. The Party is about to hold a leadership election. One of the candidates, Marit Holm, comes to Varg Veum, insisting she is being stalked. Varg is drawn into a web of conspiracy and betrayal at the heart of the political establishment, in which spin doctors and political players will do anything to achieve their ends.
Varg Veum indicates that the story was printed in the newspaper Bergens Tidene (by slamming the newspaper on the table, when he visits the reporter), when it actually was printed in the newspaper Bergens Avisen. This is clearly visible by the blue border on the front page of Bergens Tidende. See more »
A black kid causes trouble outside a club. The police are called, during the arrest the kid dies. As expected, no charges are filed against the police; as expected a politician named Einar declares that the police did a great job. The politician's claim ends up causing riots and protests in cities! This Norway after all, and not the US.
A prominent female politician named Marit of the same conservative party as Einar visits Varg's office seeking help because she's being followed. He tells her to see the police, which she's done but to no avail. He can't mask his distaste for her/her party.
The People's Party's convention is coming up and the election for their leader; up for the spot are Einar and Marit. The party's leadership tends to favor Einar and gives him the fist spot to speak at a rally. Marit sees someone and it scares her, something which Varg who is among the audience notices. When Einar's wife crosses the stage, she's shot. Varg runs to the stage and begins slapping the victim! Now he accepts the job to help Merit. And as soon he visits her after the rally he runs into the stranger that's been stalking her but the guy escapes.
Varg starts investigating and discovers that Marit had some problems with a former member of the party and he caused her trouble in the past, but now this guy has an alibi, something the police tell Varg. When a woman comes forward and offers info to Marit, Varg goes to the meeting place instead and finds the corpse of an immigrant. This will lead him to a church and to the woman that offered help. But she's reluctant.
In the meantime the party continues to rally around Einar, something that outrages Marit as she thinks the party needs a more centrist message instead of Einar's anti-immigration platform; she also has higher poll numbers. Suddenly photos are published of Marit with her secretary. Marit is forced to deny the relationship, which doesn't thrill her lover. It's she who manages to hack into someone's email and finds a bombshell of an email. The day of the convention, it's all resolved.
I'm not familiar with the book, nor with other movies in the series so it took me some time to figure out what this Varg character is about. I thought he was police, he certainly knows them and the police leadership know him, but I guess he isn't. Maybe he's a private detective, like 80s movies and series had them. Not sure, his character is never quite established here, presumably in the first movie. And he's pretty much a jerk, but so is almost everyone else in the movie. Is that how Norwegians are?
The story is intriguing. It mixes politics, crime, and investigation very well with occasional bouts of action. As you can tell, the political message is very left-leaning. There are occasionally some nice Norwegian sights. But you can't entirely connect with any of the characters. The lead character is surprisingly uncharismatic and has one weird haircut. But it's the story that counts, after all. Marit and her secretary are likable enough though.
Varg Veum - Begravde Hunder is pretty much like a standard northern European crime TV episode. They could have taken care of everything in 50-60 minutes or so but extend things and turn it into a 1:30 hour ordeal. If you're unfamiliar with this type of show, it's worth a look.
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