Mikael Persbrandt

Blu-Ray Review: Dramatically Satisfying, Oscar-Winning ‘In a Better World’

In a Better World

CHICAGO – Susanne Bier’s “In a Better World” has stuck with me. After seeing it in theaters five months ago, I was a little hard on the film due to the fact that it beat out so many great ones for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film, including “Dogtooth,” “Incendies,” and the film that most people thought would win, “Biutiful.” I still question that decision, but this is a stronger film than I first gave it credit for — a bit more shallow and cut-and-dry than it should have been but a dramatically satisfying rental, now available on Blu-ray and DVD.

Film Review: Susanne Bier’s Oscar-Winning ‘In a Better World’

In a Better World
HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 3.5/5.0
Rating: 3.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Susanne Bier’s “In a Better World” was a surprising winner at the Academy Awards when Best Foreign Language Film was announced, leading many to wonder what could have beaten the critically-acclaimed “Dogtooth” or “Biutiful,” which clearly had a lot of love considering its Best Actor nomination. “In a Better World” must have been pretty great, right? Yes and no. It’s a better film than a few of the Academy’s recent decisions (“Departures” comes to mind), but also nowhere near as complete a film as a number of alternate choices. This category is still a mess, as proven by the win for this interesting but ultimately a bit too shallow examination of revenge and parenthood.

Blu-Ray Review: Criterion’s ‘Everlasting Moments’ Has Timeless Power

Everlasting Moments

CHICAGO – Jan Troell’s “Everlasting Moments” is a beautiful film; a perfect fit for Criterion’s Blu-ray line in that it’s the kind of work that both could easily slip under the radar of movie history and not be granted the HD treatment that it deserves. There’s been some controversy over Criterion’s arrangement with IFC Films that has allowed some recent questionable inductions into the most esteemed collection in film preservation but I’m here to defend the inclusion of “Everlasting Moments.”

Epic, Gorgeous ‘Everlasting Moments’ Lingers Like a Dusty Photograph

Everlasting Moments
HollywoodChicago.com Oscarman rating: 4.5/5.0
Rating: 4.5/5.0

CHICAGO – Jan Troell’s epic “Everlasting Moments,” a Golden Globe-nominee for Best Foreign Language Film of 2008 and Sweden’s entry in the same category for the Oscars (notoriously making “Let the Right One In” ineligible because of the stupid “one country, one movie” rule), is a haunting, beautiful movie about small, emotional movements set against a backdrop of national change.

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