After seeing D. W. Griffith’s epic Intolerance, Denmark’s greatest director, Carl Theodor Dreyer (The Passion of Joan of Arc, Vampyr), was inspired to make his own four-episode historical epic with each story told end to end, anthology-style, linked by theme to the others. The unifying character, Satan, attempts to win God’s favor but is doomed to cheerless participation in dark episodes of human history: the temptation of Jesus, the Spanish Inquisition, the French Revolution and the Russo-Finnish war of 1918.
Tag Archives: Danish
In the elegant world of artists and musicians, Gertrud ends her marriage to Gustav and takes a lover, the composer Erland Jansson. When he also fails to live up to her idealistic standards, she leaves him and imposes on herself a kind of exile of the heart. In flashbacks and in conversations laced with memories, we also learn of her affair with Gabriel, who still wishes she would go off with him, and we learn of her adolescence, with its early expression of her isolating ideal of absolute love.
In the Sign of the Gemini / I Tvillingernes tegn (1975) Werner Hedman, Ole Søltoft, Preben Mahrt, Cia Löwgren, Comedy, Romance, Erotic
It’s 1930 and two record producers are competing to sign a big contract with the leading singer of the day. One kidnaps the other, thinking it’s in the bag – unaware that his competitor has a twin who will step in to save the day.
Mord i mørket / Murder in the Dark (1986) Sune Lund-Sørensen, Michael Falch, Line Knutzon, Ove Sprogøe, Crime
A journalist is trying to find out about the murder of a friend in Copenhagen’s red light district. The victim was the owner of a bar at Halmtorvet. Soon, his investigations in the world of pimps and petty criminals opens up a pandora’s box of organised crime and the journalist finds himself caught between police and gangsters involved in drug trafficking. The culprit is brought to justice in the end. But the price is high.
Christine – a picture restorer – is terminally ill. While being cared for by those who love her she fades in and out of consciousness remembering things past and imagining herself being reunited in the afterworld with her late husband. Around this main theme the film wraps a scenography of excuisite beauty coupled with references to artists such as Leonardo da Vinci, Italo Calvino and Sofonisba Anguissola in order to explore the impermanence of human existance.
A young Dane, Erik goes to Greenland to investigate the mysterious death of his brother, whom the natives called “Tukuma” (the one who is always busy). Erik has his own troubles from the past, but during his stay in Greenland he is changed forever, after getting in touch with mother nature for the first time in his life.
Nøgle hus spejl / Key House Mirror (2015) Michael Noer, Ghita Nørby, Sven Wollter, Trine Pallesen, Drama, Romance
Lily and Max have been married for more than 50 years. Now they live together in a nursing home, where Max has been reliant on professional care since his stroke. Lily has been putting her own needs aside and is desperately longing for excitement and intimacy in her life. When a man known as “the Pilot” moves in next door, Lily is immediately charmed by him and his passion for life. But neither her family nor the other residents at the nursing home are fond of her new acquaintance. Misunderstood by her family and trapped in her life with Max, Lily decides to fight to escape the bars of her invisible prison and claim her freedom.
Adams æbler / Adam’s Apples (2005) Anders Thomas Jensen, Ulrich Thomsen, Mads Mikkelsen, Nicolas Bro, Comedy, Crime, Drama
Ivan is a priest in a rural church known for the apples that grow on a large tree in front. He’s odd: seeing the world through rose-colored glasses, in denial about personal facts, and convinced he’s at war with Satan. The rectory is a half-way house for recently paroled convicts. Adam arrives for 12 weeks, a large, tough neo-Nazi, first baffled by Ivan’s thick-headed optimism, then angry. He vows to break Ivan’s faith. Meanwhile, in exasperation at Ivan’s insistence, Adam sets a personal goal: to bake an apple pie. All goes awry for the tree: crows, worms, lightening. The Book of Job gives Adam perverse insight, and his hooligan mates provide the resolution’s spring.
After the Wedding / Efter brylluppet (2006) Susanne Bier, Mads Mikkelsen, Sidse Babett Knudsen, Rolf Lassgård, Art-house, Drama
Jacob Petersen has dedicated his life to helping street children in India. When the orphanage he heads is threatened by closure, he receives an unusual offer. A Danish businessman, Jørgen, offers him a donation of $4 million dollars. There are, however, certain conditions… Not only must Jacob return to Denmark, he must also take part in the wedding of Jørgen’s daughter. The wedding proves to be a critical juncture between past and future and catapults Jacob into the most intense dilemma of his life.