Berlinale, Karlovy Vary
Sidse Babett Knudsen, Joachim Fjeldstrup, Elliott Grosset Hove, Sandra Kampp, Besir Zeciri
After her mother’s abrupt death in a car accident, teenager Ida (Sandra Guldberg Kampp) is taken into the house of her estranged aunt (Sidse Babett Knudsen), where she lives with her three young adult sons. She’s shy, she’s grieving, she’s a teenager too and feels out of place. A loving family at first glance, although a dysfunctional one. Ida slowly adapts to this new set-up though. Following her bossy yet tender aunt around, she soon finds out more about the mysterious family business. Her aunt and cousins are local mafiosos, extorting money from other surrounding families. Until, soon, “things go wrong before they even begin”, and a violent murder challenges the family members’ loyality to each other.
Danish director Jeanette Nordahl’s debut feature is nothing short of a visually striking and emotionally intense work of art. Casting-wise, there’s immense talent across the board, starting with Elliott Crosset Hove (SONS OF DENMARK, 2019), Carla Philip Røder (QUEEN OF HEARTS, 2019), newcomer Sandra Guldberg Kampp (as Ida), and the grandiose matriarch Sidse Babett Knudsen (THE DUKE OF BURGUNDY, 2014; IN FABRIC, 2018), all portraying a strangely relatable household of crooks. As for Ingeborg Topsoe’s script: separation, transition, reincorporation, a rite-of-passage tale, delicate and highly adroit, from the perspective of a lost girl facing arduous and fundamental questions. Allegiance, devotion, sacrifice, this socially realistic thriller builds its tension through a gang of detailed characters battling to the end for their own flesh and blood. – Celia Pouzet
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