Archive for the ‘Thomas Vinterberg’ Category

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.

93rd Oscar Awards

93rd Academy Awards took place on Sunday 25th April 2021 at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, the Union Station in Los Angeles, California and at The British Film Institute in London, United Kingdom

Best Picture: Nomadland

Best Director: Chloe Zhao – Nomadland

Best Actor: Anthony Hopkins – The Father

Best Actress: Frances McDormand – Nomadland

Best Supporting Actor: Daniel Kaluuya – Judas and the Black Messiah

Best Supporting Actress: Yuh-Jung YounMinari

Best Original Screenplay: Emerald Fennell –Promising Young Woman

Best Adapted Screenplay: Florian Zeller and Christopher Hampton – The Father

Best Cinematography: Erik Messerschmidt Mank

Best Costume Design: Ann RothMa Rainey’s Black Bottom

Best Make up & Hairstyling: Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom

Best Visual Effects: Tenet

Best Film Editing: Mikkel E. G. NielsenSound of Metal

Best Sound: Sound of Metal

Best Production Design: Mank

Best Documentary Feature:  My Octopus Teacher (South Africa)

Best Documentary Short Subject: Colette

Best Live Action Short Film: Two Distant Strangers directed by Trevon Free and Martin Desmond Roe

Best Original Score: Trent Reznor, Atticus Ross and Jon BastisteSoul  

Best Original Song: Fight for YouJudas and the Black Messiah

Best Animated Feature Film: Soul

Best Animated Short Film: If Anything Happens I Love You

Best Foreign Language Film: Another Rounddirected by Thomas Vinterberg (Denmark)

THE 74th BAFTA AWARDS / THE BRITISH ACADEMY FILM AWARDS

Took place on Sunday 11th April 2021 at the Royal Albert Hall in London, England

Best Film: Nomadland

Best Director: Chloe Zhao

Best Actor: Anthony Hopkins – The Father

Best Actress: Frances McDorman – Nomadland

Best Supporting Actor: Daniel Kaluuya – Judas and the Black Messiah

Best Supporting Actress: Yuh-Jung Youn – Minari

Best British Film: Promising Young Woman

Best Original Screenplay: Emerald Fennell – Promising Young Woman

Best Adapted Screenplay: Christopher Hampton and Florian Zeller – The Father

Best Costume Design: Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom

Best Visual Effects: Tenet

Best Foreign Language Film: Another Round directed by Thomas Vinterberg (Denmark)

Rivals for her Affection

Far From the Madding Crowd

far_from_the_madding_crowd_ver2

Director: Thomas Vinterberg

Cast: Carey Mulligan, Michael Sheen, Tom Sturridge, Juno Temple, Matthias Schoenaerts, Bradley Hall, Jessica Barden

Danish director Thomas Vinterberg who gained international attention with his Oscar Nominated film The Hunt, takes on a cinematic adaptation of the 19th century classic Thomas Hardy novel Far From the Madding Crowd and what a superb piece of cinema it is.

The high production values and the crackling onscreen energy between Carey Mulligan who plays the headstrong heroine Bathsheba Everdene and the handsome yet rugged farm manager Gabriel Oak is played by Belgian rising star Matthais Schoenaerts who both make this film captivating.

At the centre of Thomas Hardy’s novel was a rather unconventional idea for its time that of a female heroine taking charge of a large farm in rural Dorset in the 1870’s. Far From the Madding Crowd published in 1874 at the height of the Victorian era become an instant classic and since the twentieth century has been turned into many cinematic adaptations most notably the 1967 classic film of the same name with Julie Christie, Peter Finch, Alan Bates and Terence Stamp as well as a modern day variation Tamara Drewe (2010) with Gemma Arterton, Luke Evans and Dominic Cooper.

far_from_the_madding_crowd_ver4

Vinterberg’s version of Far From the Madding Crowd is a handsomely produced, exceptionally acted and beautifully shot in which he extracts genuine performances out of Mulligan and Schoenaerts along with the rest of the supporting cast including Michael Sheen (The Queen), as the prosperous bachelor William Boldwood and the audacious and reckless Sergeant Troy, played with a sort of hint of danger by Tom Sturridge (Being Julia and On the Road). Even Juno Temple as the befallen young damsel, Fanny Robbin is equally good.

What elevates Vinterberg’s film is an intelligent screenplay by David Nicholls and sumptuous cinematography by Charlotte Bruus Christensen together with wonderful costumes by Janet Paterson. Shot mainly in Buckinghamshire, Far From The Madding Crowd will be sure to illicit a renewed interest in Hardy’s novels and especially in the many film adaptations of his work including the 1979 film Tess directed by Roman Polanski featuring Nastassja Kinski.

Bathsheba has to deal with the business of running a farm, which was naturally male dominated as well as warding off possible suitors from the likes of Boldwood and the arrogant Sergeant Troy, whilst her sturdy farm manager, Gabriel Oak, remains loyal to her even when she makes mistakes. The ending of Far From the Madding Crowd is truly sublime and each character is perfectly cast in their roles.

Thomas Vinterberg’s ravishing and gripping rural drama should surely garner some awards at least for the handsome production design and for expertly recreating such a literary treasure on the big screen, making the film just as relevant in an age filled with multimillion dollar CGI laden blockbusters.

Far From the Madding Crowd is an exceptional film and highly recommended for those that enjoyed Jane Campion’s The Piano, Joe Wright’s 2005 film Pride and Prejudice and more recently Cary Fukunaga’s superb film Jane Eyre featuring Mia Wasikowska and Michael Fassbender.

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