The Skarderud Hypothesis

Another Round

Director: Thomas Vinterberg

Cast: Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen, Magnus Millang, Lars Ranthe, Maria Bonnevie, Albert Rudbeck Lindhardt

Film Rating: 9.5 out of 10

This film is in Danish with English Subtitles

Running time 1 hour and 55 minutes

Watch Another Round without any moral prejudice. Watch this film without judgement, because Danish director Thomas Vinterberg’s stunning film Another Round is truly superb, expertly exploring the psychology and comraderies’ of male friendships.

Focusing on four male friends in their mid-forties, they decide as teachers at a local college in Copenhagen to explore the Skarderud Hypothesis, based on Norwegian psychotherapist Finn Skarderud who believed that human beings are born with a 0.5% alcohol level too low, which in turn is based on an untested premise from an 1880 book called “On the psychological effects of wine” written by Edmondo de Amicis.

Another Round follows the raucous misadventures of Martin brilliantly played by BAFTA nominee Mads Mikkelsen (Casino Royale, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, Charlie Countryman, Doctor Strange) as he and his friends test this hypothesis with vodka, wine, absinthe and many other intoxicating drinks all during the day, when they are meant to be functioning as productive and intelligent college lecturers.

While the inebriating effects of their experiment start affecting their relationships with their wives and with their students, director Thomas Vinterberg expertly shoots this film without taking any moral stand. He shows the actors in a film which is both raw, nuanced and utterly plausible. There is no American slant on this film. It is refreshingly Scandinavian and perfectly Danish.

While the men slightly drunk become better teachers and coaches, they even begin to inspire some of their students specifically the extremely anxious Sebastian played by Danish actor Albert Rudbeck Lindhardt. Then tragedy occurs unexpectedly, because life isn’t hypothetical. It is messy, real and unpredictable.

Then Another Round does something brilliant, the film ends on a triumphant note celebrating life and all its subsequent misdemeanours, its irreverent messy complicated affairs but also everything that makes being human a celebration and something to applaud, despite our complex flawed existence. Catch the astounding dance sequence at the end of Another Round as the students celebrate their graduation. This is European cinema at its best.

Another Round deservedly won the Best Foreign Language Film Oscar at the 2021 Oscar Awards and is by far one of the best films I have seen this year and is available at this year’s European Film Festival online. Another Round gets a film rating of 9.5 out of 10 and is exceptionally brilliant.

This Danish film is highly recommended viewing, beautifully photographed, with superb acting by Mads Mikkelsen who deserved to get an Oscar nomination for his role as Martin.

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