Critic Reviews



Based on 18 critic reviews provided by Metacritic.com
Kittelsen is a funny, expansive actress, and director Anne Sewitsky manages the sad-comic tonal shifts with emotional accuracy.
The characters remain governed by what they've been told about themselves for years - that they're ugly, devious, mean, low-class, or silly - until a fresh set of eyes changes what they see in the mirror. Knowing this mutual moment of stark self-awareness is coming doesn't make its arrival any less powerful.
If it weren't so good-natured overall, Anne Sewitsky's feature debut Happy, Happy might seem entirely implausible, even for a comedy.
Picture ultimately pulls off a fairly ambitious narrative agenda with a wrap both credible and crowdpleasing.
Village Voice
The questionable black-historical shorthand detracts from what is otherwise a well-performed and fitfully amusing film.
At times, Happy, Happy is cutting comedy at its brutal best; at times, it slips on the black ice. Still, the love of life is exuberant, the pain exquisite.
Wall Street Journal
In her casually daring - and mostly endearing - debut feature, the Norwegian director Anne Sewitsky mixes and purposely mismatches light and dark moods to tell the story of a rural wife and mother looking for happiness in the wrong places, and finally in the right one.
Slant Magazine
The filmmaker looks to American modes of visual and aural expression to give Happy, Happy its soul, but all her fetish accomplishes is depersonalizing her story, making a sitcom of her character's lives.
Sets out to puncture the clichéd image of Scandinavians as rosy-cheeked choristers bonded in communal togetherness. But its subversive intentions are ultimately undercut by its lack of nerve, along with a lurking sentimentality.
Throw in some quirky interludes of a Norwegian quartet singing old American spirituals every so often, and you've got something that's truly messy, messy.

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