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Upperdog (2009)

Director:
Sara Johnsen
COUNTRY
Norway
GENRE
Drama/Comedy
INTERNATIONAL TITLE
Upperdog
RUNNING TIME
95 minutes
Producer:
Christian Fredrik Martin
Asle Vatn
Screenwriter:
Sara Johnsen


Cast includes:

CHARACTER ACTOR/ACTRESS RATING
Axel Hermann Sabado
Maria Agnieszka Grochowska
Per Mads Sjøgård Pettersen ½
Yanne Bang Chau
Fredrik, Axels far Ole Paus ½
Reporter Yngvild Støen Grotmol
Else Beate Kjersti Holmen ½
Karsten Magnus Bjørnstad ½

 

Review

Smug and quite authentic quiltwork drama discussing different varieties of dysfunctionality and alienation in a Norwegian society the filmmaker claims to have been de-emotionalised. Writer/director Sara Johnsen (Vinterkyss) demonstrates both an understanding of and an ability to convey interesting and idiosyncratic interpersonal relationships, and she also proves that she can write clever intrigues and romance which alternate rather pleasantly between classicism and pulp. The common denominator for Upperdog is that it is thoroughly interesting, and often very funny - despite touching the melodramatic towards the end, when every character opens up and cries their despair. Tidy and neat, Johnsen might have thought, but she does cheat our patience a little. Fine performances from several actors enhance this apt piece, particularly from the very talented youngster Magnus Bjørnstad as Per's little brother. He steals every scene he's in through a curious, otherworldly look on life.

 

Copyright © 8.10.2009 Fredrik Gunerius Fevang

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