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Saturday, January 28, 2012

Zero Kelvin Review - Norwegian Hunter Poet Film

Zero Kelvin (Kjaerlighetens Kjotere) is set in 1925. A Poet named Henrik (Gard Eidsvold) from Oslo wants an adventure so he leaves his girlfriend for the arctic conditions of Greenland.  He signs on with a company to Hunt where he is teamed with a hunter and a scientist.

The hunter, Randbaek (Stellan Skarsgard), is ruthless and volatile.   Henrik's romantic personality and Randbaek's viciousness clash throughout the film.

This film on the surface is easy to watch but there is an underlying complexity to the relationship between Henrik and Randbeck that makes it intriguing.

Randbeck whips the dogs and humiliates Henrik throughout the film.  It appears Randbaek has a split personality.  Most of the time he is simply vicious but he has periods of poetic tenderness.

Henrik is just the opposite. He loves the dogs and is poetic most of the time.  He is not a wimp though and does speak up for himself.  You have the feeling he could kill someone with great reluctance and regret.

It is as if Randbeck is Henrik's alter ego.  At times Henrik softens Ranbecks madness and Randbeck toughens Henrik. In many ways the two souls need each other, both spiritually and for survival, in isolated Greenland, but Randbeck is too far gone.

  I did have some problems with the film.  Randbeck steals the show. Stellan Skarsgard is a great Randeck. Steely, jaded, angry, crazy yet somehow the direction of the script has him explaining, almost sympathetically,  his madness in the end.  It seemed a little too neat.

The ultimate ending  was a tad predictable as well. I won't say much more.

That said, I love cold, arctic London, Hemingway films.  This film is well acted and has some rich character interaction that kept me glued to the screen.  

Check it out sometime



118 Minutes

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