“Happy End” is one of the most well-played Swedish films in a long time, John Croneman writes. Björn Runge’s direction is tight and the result is a showcase in acting.
I have not exactly been impressed by Björn Runge’s two previous films in the so-called Liberation Trilogy. (…) Now I see “Happy End”, a film that stretches upwards to a five-star heaven, a film completely without twists, on the contrary, low-key and almost gentle in its expression. One of the most well-played Swedish films in a long time.
The direction is tight and hard, the photo speaks to us all the time. Ulf Brantås does perhaps his best job ever.
However, I believe that the script has made the big difference, this time written by the Dane Kim Fupz Aakeson. He and Runge have turned inward, avoiding whims, kept back the expressive displays, the result is both beautiful and disturbing.
From the Swedish Film Magazine :
Happy End is a fairytale for adults. It’s about five people living in a world of
shadows, lined by lies and falsities and 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
and Mouth to Mouth about people who are trying to liberate themselves from
ORiGiNAl TiTlE Happy End DiRECTOR Björn Runge sCREENWRiTER Kim Fupz Aakeson
PRiNCiPAl CAsT Ann Petrén, Gustaf Skarsgård, Peter Andersson, David Denciks SCREENiNG DETAils 35 mm, 92 min TO bE RElEAsED Autumn 2011
Björn Runge, born in 1961, started working with film at the age of 20, working for director Roy Andersson. He graduated from Dramatiska institutet in 1989, majoring in directing. He won the Silver Bear in Berlin as well as a Guldbagge award for best director and best script with Daybreak (2004), the first film in a trilogy including Mouth to Mouth (2005) and Happy End.
Gustaf is the first actor to be presented in this video from vg.no
“Yes, then we’ll introduce the actors to play the five Norwegians on board and the one Swede. And you’ve heard rumors about who he is, so we’ll start with him. And that’s Gustaf Skarsgård. He’ll play Bengt Danielsson who was an ethnographer, he could speak Spanish and he could manage a film camera, that was very important. And Gustaf is known for Arn and the new Peter Weir film currently at movie theaters: “The way back”.
Gustaf Skarsgård will play the Swedish explorer and author Bengt Danielsson in a Norwegian major movie about the Kon-Tiki expedition.
The film, which has a budget of more than 100 million Swedish kronor, is directed by duo Joachim Rönning and Espen Sandberg. Their last movie was the very successful (in Norway) “Max Manus”.
The Kon-Tiki expedition took place 1947. With the Norwegian Thor Heyerdahl in the lead they sailed from Peru to Polynesia on a raft made of balsa tree. The trip took 101 days. Heyerdahl had thus proved that it had been possible for people from prehistoric age to get from the west coast of South America to reach the Polynesian islands. The expedition was depicted in several books and an Oscar-winning documentary film.
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Interview in the paper “Metro“:
In “The Way Back” Gustaf Skarsgård speaks English with a Latvian accent. “I went to Riga on my own initiative before the shooting and had a dialect coach who helped me”.
“The way back” is director Peter Weir’s first movie in seven years – and Gustaf Skarsgård’s Hollywood debut.
The film, which is based on the book “The Long Walk” by Slawomir Rawicz, is about a group of prisoners of war who escapes from a labor camp in the Gulag in 1941 to freedom in India. Gustaf plays the Latvian Voss and among his co-stars are big names like Colin Farrell, Ed Harris and Jim Sturgess.
- It was great to work with them. Ed Harris in particular was incredibly cool, open and warm. We were a very tight group.
- Colin was a bit outside of the group but I think it has to do with his character, he’s an outsider. But he was very nice.
Here’s a written translation of this TV-interview:
I: Have you seen Black Swan?
G: Yes, it was really good. Natalie Portman was fantastic of course, but the whole movie was equally fantastic. I know people who thought NP was the only good thing about it, but I loved the entire movie. It’s a little psycho.
I: Do you like those kinds of movies?
G: You mean psycho movies??
I: Not necessarily. Like black movies, thrillers…
G: I like movies that are good, regardless of the genre. Everything from romcoms to horror movies.