7.0/10
15,952
55 user 198 critic

A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence (2014)

En duva satt på en gren och funderade på tillvaron (original title)
Trailer
1:43 | Trailer
Sam and Jonathan, a pair of hapless novelty salesman, embark on a tour of the human condition in reality and fantasy that unfold in a series of absurdist episodes.

Director:

Roy Andersson

Writer:

Roy Andersson
5 wins & 27 nominations. See more awards »

Videos

Photos

Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Nils Westblom ... Sam
Holger Andersson Holger Andersson ... Jonathan
Per Bergqvist Per Bergqvist
Charlotta Larsson Charlotta Larsson ... Limping Lotta
Solveig Andersson
Viktor Gyllenberg ... King Karl XII
Sture Olsson Sture Olsson
Lotti Törnros Lotti Törnros ... Flamenco Teacher
Jonas Gerholm Jonas Gerholm ... Lonesome Lieutnant
Ingvar Olsson Ingvar Olsson
Ola Stensson Ola Stensson ... Captain / Barber
Oscar Salomonsson Oscar Salomonsson ... Dancer
Roger Olsen Likvern Roger Olsen Likvern ... Caretaker
Linda Birgersson Linda Birgersson
Arne Hellqvist Arne Hellqvist
Learn more

More Like This 

Comedy | Drama | Music
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

You, the Living is a film about humankind, its greatness and its baseness, joy and sorrow, its self-confidence and anxiety, its desire to love and be loved.

Director: Roy Andersson
Stars: Elisabeth Helander, Jörgen Nohall, Jan Wikbladh
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

Where are we humans going? A film poem inspired by the Peruvian poet César Vallejo. We meet people in the city. People trying to communicate, searching compassion and get the connection of small and large things.

Director: Roy Andersson
Stars: Lars Nordh, Stefan Larsson, Bengt C.W. Carlsson
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.9/10 X  

With ABOUT ENDLESSNESS, Roy Andersson adds to his cinematic oeuvre with a reflection on human life in all its beauty and cruelty, its splendour and banality.

Director: Roy Andersson
Stars: Bengt Bergius, Anja Broms, Marie Burman
Drama | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.4/10 X  

Two teenagers fall in love over the summer, in spite of cynical and disapproving adults who dismiss their relationship as being nothing but young love.

Director: Roy Andersson
Stars: Ann-Sofie Kylin, Rolf Sohlman, Anita Lindblom
"Giliap" (1975)
Crime | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.5/10 X  

A man arrives in a Swedish port city to work as a waiter at the Hotel Busarewski. The man befriends two co-workers: the talkative Gustav "The Count" Svensson and the beautiful waitress Anna... See full summary »

Director: Roy Andersson
Stars: Thommy Berggren, Mona Seilitz, Willie Andréason
Short
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

An educational film about AIDS contracted by the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare, later to be withdrawn due to its controversial content.

Director: Roy Andersson
Stars: Klas-Gösta Olsson, Anne Tubin, Lennart Björklund
Short | Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.6/10 X  

After witnessing an act of unprecedented violence without even flinching, an emotionally numb real-estate agent visits his ailing mother at the hospital, and then, the graveyard. Is there a speck of happiness in this cruel and short life?

Director: Roy Andersson
Stars: Klas-Gösta Olsson, Lennart Björklund, Christer Christensen
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.9/10 X  

One day, Saturday October 5th, in a mans life.

Director: Roy Andersson
Stars: Stefan Böhm, Curt Ericson, Eric Hansson
The Square (2017)
Comedy | Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A prestigious Stockholm museum's chief art curator finds himself in times of both professional and personal crisis as he attempts to set up a controversial new exhibit.

Director: Ruben Östlund
Stars: Claes Bang, Elisabeth Moss, Dominic West
Drama
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  

A rural farmer is forced to confront the mortality of his faithful horse.

Directors: Béla Tarr, Ágnes Hranitzky
Stars: János Derzsi, Erika Bók, Mihály Kormos
Holy Motors (2012)
Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

From dawn to dusk, a few hours in the shadowy life of a mystic man named Monsieur Oscar.

Director: Leos Carax
Stars: Denis Lavant, Edith Scob, Eva Mendes
Drama | Fantasy
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

Dying of kidney disease, a man spends his last, somber days with family, including the ghost of his wife and a forest spirit who used to be his son, on a rural northern Thailand farm.

Director: Apichatpong Weerasethakul
Stars: Thanapat Saisaymar, Jenjira Pongpas, Sakda Kaewbuadee
Edit

Storyline

Sam and Jonathan, a pair of hapless novelty salesman, embark on a tour of the human condition in reality and fantasy that unfold in a series of absurdist episodes.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Drama | Fantasy

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for brief sexuality and some disturbing images | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

The film contains 39 vignettes that examines the absurdity of ordinary life. See more »

Connections

Follows Songs from the Second Floor (2000) See more »

Soundtracks

Zandahls Kanon
Written and composed by Frans Hodell (1866)
Musical arrangement and performed by Björn Isfält
See more »

User Reviews

 
In a world so sad, is it allowed to have a laugh?
24 January 2015 | by mr_spacemanSee all my reviews

This Scandinavian movie which takes place in an unnamed Swedish town is about bringing joy and laughter to people when there isn't really anything to laugh about. Jonathan (Holger Andersson) and Sam (Nils Westblom) are two joke article salesman, who have only three products: vampire teeth, a canned laughter sack and a frightening rubber mask which they try to sell to resellers. However, the duo is not successful in what they do and so are their – not so funny – products and their uncreative and repetitive sales talk. As they stumble into financial trouble their friendship and business project is about to collapse.

This loose and rather sad story is patched with more absurd incidences. A longer scene takes place in a bar when the young Swedish King Charles XII (1682 - 1718) rides in, as he guides the army to the battle against Russia. Charles asks the handsome barman to come with him to the war. Later, when the army comes home and the war is lost, Charles again visits the bar because he has to go to the toilet. These scenes are not meant to be taken literally but rather embraced as pure images decorated with strange and morbid humor. The world which director Roy Andersson paints for the viewer is drab. There are no colorful things: walls are ocher, bars are gray, the furniture is simple wooden dark brown, and even the faces of the protagonists are white. Nevertheless, the dry jokes, the black humor and the absurdity make the movie fascinating and funny, though a guilty pleasure. Is it really OK to have a laugh or – even worse! – to sell jokes in a world that is so odd, so gray, so dark and sad?

There are two scenes that may have caused uproar but I think not many people made it that far since these scene appear rather late in the film. I won't give it away; you have to find out for yourself. The things that drive common movie goers away are the incredible slow pace of the movie (think of REPULSION (1965)) and the lack of a cohesive storyline. Art seekers on the other side will find an interesting and subtle movie with strange humor that is rarely found.


29 of 42 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See all 55 user reviews »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.
Edit

Details

Official Sites:

Official site [Japan]

Country:

Sweden | Germany | Norway | France | Denmark

Language:

Swedish | English

Release Date:

24 October 2014 (Norway) See more »

Also Known As:

A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence See more »

Edit

Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$25,313, 7 June 2015

Gross USA:

$222,989

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$1,472,431
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.78 : 1
See full technical specs »

Contribute to This Page

We've Got Your Streaming Picks Covered

Looking for some great streaming picks? Check out some of the IMDb editors' favorites movies and shows to round out your Watchlist.



Recently Viewed