Monday, June 2, 2014

Movie of the Week – The Hunt

This week’s movie: The Hunt (2013)

Lucas is a teacher who lives a lonely life, having separated from his wife and now in the midst of a custody battle over his son; but, things are getting better. He meets a girl and his relationship with his son is stronger than ever. Everything is shattered, however, by an innocent lie.

Danish writer-director Thomas Vinterberg directs his best film to date (following up on the promise of his breakthrough film The Celebration; and I am very interested to see his next Far from the Madding Crowd). The film features excellent aesthetics, as Vinterberg works with composer Nikolaj Egelund, cinematographer Charlotte Bruus Christensen, and production designer Torben Stig Nielsen.

The film stars Mads Mikkelsen, who is fantastic, and features Thomas Bo Larsen and Annika Wedderkopp in support.

The Hunt is the first of four 2013 films that I missed in theaters but really loved, and thus want to highlight. It is a very weighty and engaging character drama, exploring how a person reacts to their whole world falling apart in an instant. It also touches on the phenomenon of group think and social herding – i.e. when a community or group of people forms an opinion without all the facts, because there is pressure from the whole to conform. The film focuses on a particularly sensitive issue, one that leaves a lasting stigma (even if it is untrue), leaving the viewer to ask if they would react any different when confronted with the suspicions regarding someone they know given the gravity of the implied crime. The Hunt is a must-see for fans of very good and intense character dramas.

Trailer: Here
Available on: Blu-ray and Video On-Demand

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