7.7/10
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92 user 202 critic

In a Better World (2010)

Hævnen (original title)
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The lives of two Danish families cross each other, and an extraordinary but risky friendship comes into bud. But loneliness, frailty and sorrow lie in wait.

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Writers:

(screenplay), (story) | 2 more credits »
Won 1 Oscar. Another 11 wins & 22 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Najeeb (as Will Johnson)
Eddy Kimani ...
Patient (as Eddie Kimani)
Emily Mulaya ...
Sygeplejerske
Gabriel Muli ...
Læge
June Waweru ...
Sygeplejerske
Mary Ndoku Mbai ...
Patient (as Mary Nduku Mbai)
Dynah Bereket ...
Gammel dame
...
Christian (as William Jøhnk Juel Nielsen)
...
Elsebeth Steentoft ...
Signe
Satu Helena Mikkelinen ...
Hanna
...
Eva
Simon Maagaard Holm ...
Sofus
Emil Nicolai Helms ...
Sofus' skolekammerat
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Storyline

Anton is a doctor who commutes between his home in an idyllic town in Denmark, and his work at an African refugee camp. In these two very different worlds, he and his family are faced with conflicts that lead them to difficult choices between revenge and forgiveness. Anton and his wife Marianne, who have two young sons, are separated and struggling with the possibility of divorce. Their older, ten-year-old son Elias is being bullied at school, until he is defended by Christian, a new boy who has just moved from London with his father, Claus. Christian's mother recently lost her battle with cancer, and Christian is greatly troubled by her death. Elias and Christian quickly form a strong bond, but when Christian involves Elias in a dangerous act of revenge with potentially tragic consequences, their friendship is tested and lives are put in danger. Ultimately, it is their parents who are left to help them come to terms with the complexity of human emotions, pain and empathy. Written by Sisse Graum Jørgensen, Producer

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Drama | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for violent and disturbing content some involving preteens, and for language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

|

Language:

| | |

Release Date:

26 August 2010 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

In a Better World  »

Filming Locations:

 »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$33,058, 3 April 2011, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$1,008,098

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$13,004,198
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

It took just three weeks in Danish cinemas for the film to turn a profit, according to the studio Zentropa. See more »

Goofs

Eva's hands change position on Christian's face when she is holding him in the hospital corridor. See more »

Quotes

Anton: Sometimes it feels like there is a veil between you and death, but that veil disappears when you lose someone you loved or someone who was close to you, and you see death clearly, for a second, but later the veil returns, and you carry on living. Then things will be alright again.
See more »

Connections

Featured in Ebert Presents: At the Movies: Episode #1.11 (2011) See more »

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User Reviews

 
An astonishing achievement
24 November 2010 | by See all my reviews

Saw this in Toronto and it remained with me for days afterward. Shattering filmmaking! The size and elegance of a Hollywood big budget, with the honesty and challenge of an indy. The performances, especially those of the two boys, are riveting, but I was also impressed with the deep focus photography, the haunting score. Went to see this because I had so enjoyed After the Wedding - but feel this is even better. Only the ending conflict resolution is, perhaps, a little too easy-- but not unearned. And oh boy, was I grateful for it. I want to see this with my son, because I want him to experience the moral and emotional snake pit Bier and her screenwriter toss us into: every guy --no matter what age-- will get it, and none of us will like it very much. To me, Bier speaks about what it SHOULD mean to be a man. Is vengeance built into our genes? I hope not. And I hope this wins the Academy Award this year, and everybody in America goes to see it.


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