Friday, May 18, 2012

Happy End (Björn Runge 2011)

Happy End. SE/DK © 2011 Zentropa International Sweden AB / Trollhättan Film AB. P: Martin Persson, Madeleine Ekman. D: Björn Runge. SC: Kim Fupz Aakeson. DP: Ulf Brantås - Fuji - Lab Nordisk. PD: Jette Lehmann. Makeup and hair: Camilla Karlsson. M: Ebba Forsberg. S: Hans Møller. ED: Lena Runge. C: Ann Petrén (Jonna), Malin Buska (Katrine), Gustaf Skarsgård (Peter), Johan Widerberg (Asger), Peter Andersson (Mårten), Mariah Kanninen (Hanne), David Dencik (Richard), Fredrik Gildea (Zidan), Hanna Malmberg (Nina), Anna Azcarate (psykolog), Mattias Nordkvist (psykolog), Said Legue (Jamal), Helena Gezelius (nurse), Yvette Ramirez (nurse). 97 min. Released by Cinema Mondo with Finnish subtitles by Anna-Leea Kaila. 35 mm print viewed at Kino Engel, Helsinki, 18 May 2012.

Technical specs from the end credits: Ljus: EF Rental, David Medina – Kamera: Kameraten & Red Rental - Ljudutrustning: Enric, Henric Andersson – Passutrustning: Dagsljus AB – Råfilm: Fuji - Postproduktion: Utskjutning & postfacilitet: Filmek Teknik AB, Klippegangen ApS – Lab: Nordisk Film Shortcut Stockholm.

Swedish Film Database synopsis: "Happy End is a fairytale for adults. It’s about five people with an important liaison to one another, who are all avoiding to be truthful. They are living in a world of shadows, lined by lies and falsities and are only waiting for the truth to appear so that they may be able to continue their lives in another direction. Happy End is the third part of Björn Runge’s trilogy of liberation, commenced with "Daybreak / Om jag vänder mig om" and “Mouth to Mouth / Mun mot mun” about people who are trying to liberate themselves from destructivity."

Having just seen La Délicatesse with Audrey Tautou working in a French office of a Swedish company I continued the Swedish evening with Björn Runge's Happy End.

It is a multi-character study from the shadow side of the welfare society - in this movie an ill-faring society. It's about broken lives, solitude, and false appearances. A bit like recent Finnish multi-character films (Vuosaari, Kohta 18), there shines a light in the end of the tunnel in the desperate-seeming stories.

The movie is visually interesting and original. Ulf Brantås has shot it on 35 mm photochemical film, and the digital intermediate has been performed successfully. The test is the juiciness and the refined softness in the nature footage. The light in this movie is beautiful, although the stories are ugly.

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