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Another Round (Druk): BFI London Film Festival Movie Review

Another Round (Druk): BFI London Film Festival Movie Review

Director: Thomas Vinterberg

Screenplay: Thomas Vinterberg, Tobias Lindholm

Producers: Kasper Dissing, Sisse Graum Jørgensen

Starring: Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen, Magnus Millang, Lars Ranthe

See more of our BFI London Film Festival Coverage here.

 


Another Round (Druk) 

Winner of the LFF Audience Pick for Best Film, Thomas Vinterberg’s Another Round (or Druk in its native Danish) more than earns that title. 

Vinterberg’s film follows four jaded teachers who decide to test the theory that upping your Blood Alcohol Level even slightly can unlock more of who you really are. Inhibitions lower, you become more open, and, they believe, you end up enjoying life more. Think micro-dosing. While it may sound like an irreverent concept, Vinterberg’s film touches on some home truths for his homeland. 

Denmark has a long history with alcohol. Among their Nordic neighbours, Danes are marked as the heaviest drinkers. The problem is still worse among Danish youngsters, with their drinking habits some of the worst in Europe. In a study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Public Health, it was found that in 2005, 20% of the population of Denmark were classed as “heavy drinkers”, and 14% had engaged in “harmful alcohol usage”. 

Druk in Love 

As one may imagine, this hypothesis testing proves harder to control than the group intended. The varied implications of continuous alcohol consumption are addressed one and all in Another Round. Performances from the four protagonists are all distinctly and subtly unique, but when needed they pack the appropriate punch. Unsurprisingly, Mads Mikklelsen is the jewel in Another Round’s crown. Between his crumbling marriage and stagnant career, Mikkelsen’s astute performance is particularly potent. Then again, he is a pretty intoxicating man in general.

Another Round is a surprisingly touching film that tells us far more stories that the one we are handed in the title. Camerawork and score combine to create a distinct aesthetic; cool, clean, and undeniably Scandinavian. We become emotionally invested in each teacher as an individual as we are afforded insights into their different but all equally unsatisfying lives. From overbearing wives and demanding children to a loneliness from none of the above, we follow four very distinct but shared journeys.

Another Round is a triumph

Another Round is an incredibly affecting film. From tragedy to desperation to unbridled joy, we feel every ounce long the way. A final sequence that is one of my favourites in recent memory leaves us smiling, but questioning lessons learned. An immediate recommendation and a delicate triumph, Another Round is a joyful and devastating cultural commentary, on ice. 

 


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