I saw this wonderfully witty film yesterday afternoon at the State Theatre on Sunday 19th June 2022 at 3pm as part of the last day of the Sydney Film Festival and going in I had no clue about the film’s narrative.
Something about rich people, that’s literally it.
This is always the best way for me to watch a film, the less I know, the less I can pre-judge and the cleaner the experience can be. Going in unadorned by my sometimes partly informed opinions I don’t allow my brain to make 2 and 2 equal 5 as it is wont to do.
I did know that it was directed by Ruben Östlund, the Swedish director whose last two films I enjoyed very much, Force Majeure (2014) and The Square (2017) and also that it had just won the Palme D’Or at Cannes. It was probably going to be pretty decent.
The festival director, Nashen Moodley introduced the film and told us that we were one of the first audiences in the world to view the film off the back of it’s Cannes success.
He said that it was a wild film and were in for a wild ride.
He wasn’t wrong.
One of the great things about being in a darkened room with a bunch of strangers is the collective experience. This was an audience of cinema lovers and consequently they were all there out of a shared love for the art. The excitement was palpable.
A searing indictment of the discrepancies between the have too much and the rest of the world.
The film is told in 3 chapters.
The first is about the expected usual male/female roles that are played out in society, the second is set on a luxury cruise ship and the third is set on a beach.
Each chapter delves intelligently and very humorously about various topics including capitalism, socialism, taxes, power, masculine and feminine roles, and ultimately the usefulness and capabilities of the individual.
The less that is said about plot, the better for the unsuspecting audience.
1-There will be models
2-There will be a cruise
3-There will be an island.
The actors; Harris Dickinson, Charlbi Dean, Dolly De Leon, Vicki Berlin, Henrik Dorsen, Jean-Christophe Folly, Iris Berben, Woody Harrelson and Zlatko Buric are all brilliant in this. Special shout out to Zlatko Buric who I last saw as Milo in the Pusher trilogy years ago and he is superb here.
Check him out in the clip below playing drunk magnificently.
Ruben Östlund continues his successful run of films with biting social observations in this absolutely brilliant, unapologetic satire on the rich and privileged.
I highly recommend you seek out this very funny film when it is released near you.
A well deserved Palme D’Or winner.