Friday, March 2, 2012

Kærlighed på film (Just Another Love Story)

Here's a movie from Denmark that was unexpectedly compelling.  Jonas, not particularly happy in his marriage or his job as a crime scene photographer, witnesses a terrible wreck.  He assists the victim, Julia, young and pretty, but does not stay at the scene after emergency crews arrive.  The next day he heads to the hospital to see how she's doing.  As he's leaving, one of his colleagues asks if she's pretty.  Jonas admits, well, yes she is.  His colleague quips, "A beautiful woman and a mystery.  Isn't that how any film noir starts?"
Julia's family is so pleased to meet this man who clearly loves her.
And noir it is.  When Jonas arrives at the hospital, he is immediately assumed to be Sebastian, Julia's lover whom the family has never met.  She comes around, but with amnesia, so she starts thinking Jonas is Sebastian.  Jonas falls in love with Julia, and although he makes a few half-hearted attempts to disabuse them of the notion that he is Sebastian, he does not want to give up Julia.  As you might expect, Julia's memory starts coming back, and there is some question whether Sebastian is still alive. . . .

I have said before that movies whose whole premise is based on stupid choices by the main characters drive me nuts, and there's some of that here.  Why didn't Jonas tell everyone from the start that he wasn't Sebastian, that he was just a nice guy who wanted to check on Julia?  Well, if he had, we wouldn't have the noir, would we?  He keeps digging the hole for himself, and the suspense builds as we wonder how it's all going to come crashing down on him.  I liked it.

Bottom line, 3 stars.

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