We just finished watching our second Danish film Terribly Happy (on Netflix Instant Play).
And boy, did we strike gold with this one too (if you want to know, our first Danish film was the lovely After the Wedding a.k.a. Efter brylluppet, which is set partially in India).
Folks, Terribly Happy is an absolutely gorgeous film, the kind you wish our thieving Bollywood dickheads would make.
Alas, if only, if only.
Directed by Henrik Ruben Genz (now don’t you schmucks tell us the name rings a bell), the movie falls in what you’d consider the crime genre.
Not those bang-bang, dishoom-dishoom filled with gun-shots movies. Au contraire, one of those rare, hard to predict what comes next dark movies.
By the way, why is our Brandy tasting sweet tonight? We’ve just mixed it with Seltzer water. Yet, it tastes sweet. Weird. 🙁
The movie, with its pretty ironic title, is based on the novel by Erling Jepsen and the screenplay by Henrik Ruben Genz and Dunja Gry Jensen.
When a young policeman Robert (Jakob Cedergren) is transferred from the big city Copenhagen to a back-of-beyond Danish village as punishment after some erratic behavior, you’d expect the rural posting to be a walk in the park.
Nothing much is supposed to happen in a small village, right?
Ha ha, if you thought that you’d be so mistaken considering what happens in this tiny Danish village for the next 80 minutes.
We Do it Our Way Here
This rural outpost is different where the local folks say they solve their problems without help from outsiders.
If that bit about solving their problem without outsider involvement sounds ominous, it sure is.
We get hints of locals disappearing into the nearby bogs without much ado.
The place has an eerie, haunted look with not many people around.
A young girl is out on the street pushing a pram when things get dangerous at her home.
A local guy Jorger beats his wife frequently, and badly enough, for her to require stitches. The wife falls over the policeman and asks him to save her. Is the woman batty or is she really in trouble?
The local doctor and his cronies are seen drinking and blithely playing cards in the midst of everything.
Overall, director Genz builds up a grim, foreboding ambiance of the town.
Kinda like lightning heralding the thunder of the coming storm.
For the policeman, it’s a hard adjustment and a struggle in his new posting as he disturbs the established order with his initial non-confirming behavior.
The movie keeps you on edge throughout with the tension building up within the first 10 or 12 minutes itself.
Crimes & Crimes of Passion
Crimes lead to passion lead to crimes of passion in the small village where everyone knows everything including the bad things happening in their midst but no one lifts a little finger to stop them.
There are quite a few neat twists in the movie to throw you off kilter.
Much as we loved the earlier turns in the movie, it was the ending that endeared itself the most to us.
We should’ve seen it coming but didn’t until the last second.
The policeman Robert is played decently enough by Jakob Cedergren. Others do their job equally well. The photography is well executed.
SearchIndia.com strongly recommends Terribly Happy.
If you live in the U.S., you can watch Terribly Happy on Netflix Instant Play or DVD. As for the rest of you schmucks, well as they say in Mera Bharat Mahaan Chori Tera Kaam Hai. 😉
After the Wedding