Anders W Berthelsen

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Just Another Love Story [Kaerlighed Pa Film] Review


Very Good
Starting as a quiet drama about identity and obsession, along the lines of While You Were Sleeping, this Danish noir thriller drifts more towards Vertigo as it develops. And then it breaks into pure ironic terror. Even though it's sometimes contrived, it's utterly gripping.

Forensic photographer Jonas (Berthelsen) narrates his own story, Sunset Blvd-style, through a series of flashbacks. After rescuing the helpless, beautiful Julia (Hemse), he allows her family to think he's her boyfriend. He knows he should tell the truth, but the mystery is too inviting, and when she wakes from her coma, her memory and vision cloud her understanding. The problem is that Jonas is married to Mette (Fich), and as he obsesses over Julia he begins to forget who he really is.

Continue reading: Just Another Love Story [Kaerlighed Pa Film] Review

Just Another Love Story Review


OK
The narrator in writer/director Ole Bornedal's Danish thriller Just Another Love Story -- a film that's probably too aware of its genre signifiers -- rhetorically asks the audience "A beautiful woman and a mystery. Isn't that how any film noir starts?" Indeed that's true, at least for the better ones. And for a time, Bornedal's cheerfully dark story hits the right admixture of seductive danger that it doesn't matter how many other films and books it might remind you of. Bornedal at least knows his noir well enough to remember that the more accomplished genre entries don't just have a femme fatale with a past, they also feature a grade-A schnook, the kind of bona fide sap who believes everything a dark-haired beauty tells them and thinks he can handle himself. They never can.

Bornedal's sap is Jonas (Anders W. Berthelsen), a police crime scene photographer who lives with his wife and two children in some dead-soul Copenhagen high-rise that he can't afford and still smells of paint. It's a grim life, photographing dead people while his colleagues make self-consciously bad jokes and his midlife crisis churns in overdrive. But Bornedal -- after a stylized opening sequence that tosses out a trio of teaser scenes, including one showing Jonas bleeding to death in the rain -- doesn't do much with Jonas' ennui before throwing the other woman at him and cranking up the noir. It's a whopper of an entry, with Julia's car smashing into Jonas's, after which she slips into a coma and awakes with no memory to find Jonas saying that he's her lover Sebastian, whom her family had heard about but never met. In the first of several hard-to-swallow developments, Jonas is mistaken by Julia's family for Sebastian when he shows up at the hospital to check up on her, and he never corrects them -- he's got a fatale to fall for.

Continue reading: Just Another Love Story Review

Mifune Review


Excellent
In 1995, Danish directors Lars Von Trier and Thomas Vinterberg established a code of ethics for an alternative form of filmmaking. The two directors were fed up by the way in which movie making was "raped" by technology such as special effects, expensive gear, cranes, filters, dollies, and spotlights. They wisely knew that they could never measure up to the Americans in that area, so they decided that European filmmaking should head in an all-together different direction. The result was a vow of chastity complete with the ten commandments of what they called Dogme filmmaking. Some of these groundbreaking rules included: on location shooting without the ability to bring in props, the rule that music will not be used unless it occurs where the scene is being shot, the camera must be hand-held, optical work and filters are forbidden, and the films must not contain superficial action such as murders, weapons, etc. The purpose was to force a director to think along unconventional and imaginative lines in order to create a Dogme film, and the first two attempts, Vinterberg's The Celebration, and Von Trier's The Idiots, were both successful.

Director Soren Kragh-Jacobsen's Mifune, is the third film from the Danish Dogme Collective. Subtitled in English, it is the story of Kresten (Anders W. Berhelsen) who has become an overnight sensation as a businessman in Copenhagen. The morning after his wedding to the boss' daughter, he receives a phone call that his estranged father has just died. He has trouble explaining this to his wife, since he has told everyone in the city that he has no living relatives, in attempt to disguise his humble origins. Now he must return to the family's run down farm to bury his father and make arrangements to hide the truth of his mentally retarded brother from his new family and friends.

Continue reading: Mifune Review

Italian For Beginners Review


Excellent
Danish writer-director Lone Scherfig's durable and spunky romantic comedy Italian for Beginners is an intoxicatingly spry and entertaining romantic comedy produced under the auspices of Lars Von Trier's Dogme 95 guidelines. (Scherfig holds the distinction of being the first female filmmaker to helm a film under the Dogme 95 manifesto.)

The film takes place in a squalid Copenhagen suburb where emotions and anxiety seemingly run amok. While the actual narrative is simplistic, it profiles six desperately needy and complicated individuals looking to fulfill themselves. When a recently widowed (and young) pastor named Andreas (Anders W. Berthelsen) arrives on the scene to take over the duties for a wayward congregation, he finds himself catering to the interests of a half dozen disillusioned individuals trying to make sense out of their empty lives.

Continue reading: Italian For Beginners Review

Mifune Review


Excellent
In 1995, Danish directors Lars Von Trier and Thomas Vinterberg established a code of ethics for an alternative form of filmmaking. The two directors were fed up by the way in which movie making was "raped" by technology such as special effects, expensive gear, cranes, filters, dollies, and spotlights. They wisely knew that they could never measure up to the Americans in that area, so they decided that European filmmaking should head in an all-together different direction. The result was a vow of chastity complete with the ten commandments of what they called Dogme filmmaking. Some of these groundbreaking rules included: on location shooting without the ability to bring in props, the rule that music will not be used unless it occurs where the scene is being shot, the camera must be hand-held, optical work and filters are forbidden, and the films must not contain superficial action such as murders, weapons, etc. The purpose was to force a director to think along unconventional and imaginative lines in order to create a Dogme film, and the first two attempts, Vinterberg's The Celebration, and Von Trier's The Idiots, were both successful.

Director Soren Kragh-Jacobsen's Mifune, is the third film from the Danish Dogme Collective. Subtitled in English, it is the story of Kresten (Anders W. Berhelsen) who has become an overnight sensation as a businessman in Copenhagen. The morning after his wedding to the boss' daughter, he receives a phone call that his estranged father has just died. He has trouble explaining this to his wife, since he has told everyone in the city that he has no living relatives, in attempt to disguise his humble origins. Now he must return to the family's run down farm to bury his father and make arrangements to hide the truth of his mentally retarded brother from his new family and friends.

Continue reading: Mifune Review

The Weight Of Water Review


Good

Director Kathryn Bigelow may produce broad, middling big-budget fare when she has a studio breathing down her neck and a big-name star to appease, as she did in this summer's Harrison Ford submarine thriller "K-19: The Widowmaker." But left to her own devices, she's capable of creating fine layers of intimacy and intensity, as she does in "The Weight of Water."

The film, released two years ago in Europe, is a character-driven dual narrative -- the story of a troubled couple spending a tense working vacation on a sailboat with the husband's brother and his enticing girlfriend, and the story of a century-old murder on the New England island where they're anchored.

The wife Jean (played by the wonderfully nuanced and inconspicuously beautiful Catherine McCormack) is an intellectual photographer whose assignment to take pictures of the island and the murder site for a magazine story is the reason for their trip, and the movie's passport into the past. The husband Thomas (a complicated, imaginative and sullen Sean Penn), is a Pulitzer Prize-winning poet who some years ago stopped picking up his pen and started tipping back the bottle. Their normally steadfast but strained relationship is put particularly on edge by the company they're keeping on this trip.

Continue reading: The Weight Of Water Review

Italian For Beginners Review


Very Good

With the warm, evocative, sublimely human, sweetly melancholy romantic comedy "Italian for Beginners," the fascinating Danish-born minimalist moviemaking style called Dogme95 has graduated beyond its signature look of shaky-vérité handheld cameras, "found" settings and natural light.

While the Dogme movement has produced several fascinating films, its strict, nitty-gritty code the filmmakers work under -- no soundstages or stage lighting and no stationary cameras among other rules -- has felt conspicuous in many of the 25-odd films certified by the informal genre governing body, the Dogme Collective.

But in "Italian," writer-director Lone Scherfig has dropped the pretense and just made a movie. Her filmmaking is transparent, so nothing stands between the viewer and the picture's wonderful world of curiously interconnected characters.

Continue reading: Italian For Beginners Review

Anders W Berthelsen

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Anders W Berthelsen Movies

Just Another Love Story [Kaerlighed Pa Film] Movie Review

Just Another Love Story [Kaerlighed Pa Film] Movie Review

Starting as a quiet drama about identity and obsession, along the lines of While You...

Mifune Movie Review

Mifune Movie Review

In 1995, Danish directors Lars Von Trier and Thomas Vinterberg established a code of ethics...

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Italian for Beginners Movie Review

Italian for Beginners Movie Review

Danish writer-director Lone Scherfig's durable and spunky romantic comedy Italian for Beginners is an intoxicatingly...

Mifune Movie Review

Mifune Movie Review

In 1995, Danish directors Lars Von Trier and Thomas Vinterberg established a code of ethics...

The Weight Of Water Movie Review

The Weight Of Water Movie Review

Director Kathryn Bigelow may produce broad, middling big-budget fare when she has a studio breathing...

Italian For Beginners Movie Review

Italian For Beginners Movie Review

With the warm, evocative, sublimely human, sweetly melancholy romantic comedy "Italian for Beginners," the fascinating...

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