Is there a possibility of redemption for commiting a crime? For being considered a bad person? A criminal one?
Erik Poppe, the danish director of Adam's Apples, the movie from Day Twelve: March, 21, seems to think that there are no such thing as good and bad people. Beyond all archetypes - the good priest, the bad criminal, the beloved mother - there are only human beings.
Human beings that can see themselves before impossible situations in life.
After Adam's Apples, I got curious about Poppe, and tried to find his other films. This was not an easy task, but the fabulous Rodrigo (aka one of my dearest friends) found the other two for me. And today, at lunch time, we watched to Troubled Water (DeUsylinge). At the end, we looked at each other and said: wow. Nodding in amazement for what we've just seen. And listened.
Yes, because part of the story is told through the thunderous sound of a church organ. A sound that dominated my feelings, my thoughts, my view, and told me about an unspeakable sadness. That tells about something that we try to explain, judge or justify, but we are not able to: the impossible futility of violence.
I use to think that challenged realities and difficult times make great art. I don't know if the Nordic society is troubled, but their movies are, and they present fundamental refletions about today's life for us that live in this absurd, yet amazing, world.
Distorted close-ups, inumerous flashbacks, music, two character's different views: all of these elements tell together a story about violence and the multiple aspects that seem to lead to loss. We walk through Poppe's story with his images and sounds. We are guided piece by piece until we can see before us a puzzle that has no end, actually. Because those lives, despite the movie's end, are not over. We keep it in thoughts, in sensations, trying to make sense of something that has no explanation.
At last, it is important to highlight Pål Sverre Hagen's performance as Jan Thomas. His face tells too much, and the close-ups on his expression put us on all the sadness, guilt and need for atonement that this story carries.
Troubled Water (DeUsynlige). Directed by Erik Poppe.
With: Pal Sverre Hagen, Trine Dyrholm, Ellen Dorrit
Petersen. Writer: Harald Rosenlow Eeg. Norway/
Sweden/Germany, 2008, 115 min., Dolby Digital,
PS: Fragment: Her, 2013 - a movie that I've seen so many times that I lost account... But I got hooked on it every time. And the soundtrack is beautiful. Heartbreaking.