Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Bothersome Man (Den Brysomme Manne) (NORWEGIAN)

Film Review by Kam Williams

Headline: Amnesiac Adjusts to Soulless Utopia in Wry Social Satire

Suppose you were suffering from amnesia and suddenly found yourself inexplicably welcomed to an unfamiliar city you don’t recognize by soulless strangers who inform you that you’re an accountant before escorting you to your new home. That is precisely the predicament that 40 year-old Andreas (Trond Fausa Aurvaag) lands in after disembarking from a bus at the point of departure of The Bothersome Man.
The antiseptic metropolis’ stark, desert environs are a perfect match for the personalities of its emotionally-barren inhabitants. This carefully-planned utopia is a world without kids where food has no taste and alcohol can’t get you drunk. In fact, you can’t even hurt yourself, as Andreas learns when he accidentally chops off a finger only to have it magically grow back.
Surrounded by somber automatons who appear content with their zombied lifestyle, Andreas feels isolated, despite an arranged relationship with a cute, if cold, interior decorator (Petronella Barker) with not much of a personality. Then, when he can’t generate any passion in a co-worker (Birgitte Larsen) who’s a little too willing to be his mistress, our frustrated fish out of water gets fed up and simply wants out of his harrowing nightmare.
But that is easier said than done in this surreal dystopia, where even if a Norwegian would, he couldn’t commit suicide. A deliberate, thought-provoking, existential meditation on the curse of creating of a neverending heaven on Earth.

Very good (3 stars)
In Norwegian with subtitles.
Running time: 95 minutes
Studio: Film Movement

1 comment:

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