Monday 28 Jul

Escape from Tomorrow

With Escape from Tomorrow, one fears the story behind the movie would loom larger than the movie itself. Luckily, that is not the case. After all, it opens with a decapitation on Disney World’s Big Thunder Mountain Railroad roller coaster.
05/06/2014 | Comments 0


William Friedkin spends a lot of time in his 2013 memoir discussing why Sorcerer didn't click with critics and audiences even though he believes it to be better than his previous film, The Exorcist. Now that Warner Home Video has reissued Sorcerer on Blu-ray, we can see what Friedkin's fuss is all about.
04/23/2014 | Comments 0

Broadchurch: The Complete First Season

Welcome to the coastal resort of Broadchurch, population … oh, who can keep track, what will all the corpses? Yes, Broadchurch is yet another British television procedural involving the search for a murderer in a quaint little town, just like the limited series The Fall and Top of the Lake.
04/23/2014 | Comments 0

Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones

Essentially part five in the ridiculously profitable horror franchise, Paranormal Activity: The Marked Ones continues the found-footage conceit of the other films. The difference is instead of the scares taking place in rich white suburbia, they do so in a junky apartment complex on a largely Latino side of Oxnard, Calif.
04/23/2014 | Comments 0

Holy Ghost People

Holy Ghost People examines two sisters whose bond is torn — but by what? After her sibling has been missing for more than a year, Charlotte (Emma Greenwell, TV's Shameless) intends to find out.
04/15/2014 | Comments 0
Home · Articles · Movies · Drama · In a Better World

In a Better World

Don't miss this excellent Danish drama.

Rod Lott June 1st, 2011

It’s not for nothing “In a Better World” took home the Oscar and the Golden Globe this past awards season as the year’s best foreign-language film.

The Danish drama is staggeringly good, rich in character and emotion.

And in a better world, it wouldn’t be relegated to the single screen on which it opens locally Friday, exclusively at AMC Quail Springs Mall 24. I suspect “Danish drama” conjures up the most boring of images among the minds of moviegoers, but director Susanne Bier’s follow-up to “Things We Lost in the Fire” is anything but dull.

On its surface, the work is about two schoolboys forging a friendship as they cope with an individual loss. His mother dead of cancer, Christian (William Jøhnk Nielsen) moves from London to a new school, where he defends the dentally challenged Elias (Markus Rygaard) from bullies. To Elias, Christian is, true to his name, a savior — because with his parents splitting, he needs a friend.

Rescue is short-lived as hate sweeps in quickly, like the dust devil in the African desert where Elias’ doctor father performs missionary work, and the story’s true subject reveals itself: violence. It’s about the evil that men do to one another, that kids inflict on each other, and sometimes, that adults do to defenseless children. Wherever such acts occur, their effects are unfortunately universal.

That Bier has pulled two utterly believable performances from Nielsen and Rygaard, neither with a credit to his name beforehand, is a marvel. But they’re just two pieces of a greater puzzle that Bier assembles with extraordinary skill, granting visual elegance to such an ugly subject.

With ease, “In a Better World” has secured a spot on my 10 best list for 2011. Don’t miss it.

  • Currently 3.5/5 Stars.
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