Wednesday, May 22, 2024

EUR Review: ‘A Second Chance’ Shows How Far One Man Goes for Love

*How far does ones moral compass tilt when faced with easing the pain of a loved one?  What is considered just or unjust and right or wrong? That is what we find out in, “A Second Chance,” a Nordic noir independent film directed by Oscar-winning and Emmy nominated Susanne Bier and stars Game of Thrones’ Nikolaj Coster-Waldau as a police detective whose morals are severely tested and dare I say compromised.  The film, which includes English subtitles, is having a weeklong preview at the Arena Cinelounge in Hollywood from July 13 – July 19.

Detective Andreas (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) and his wife Anna (Maria Bonnevie) are a happy loving couple with an infant son named Alexander.  They have what appears to be a very good life, that is, until things begin to unravel.  The film begins with Nikolaj and his partner Simon (Ulrich Thomsen) responding to a domestic call involving an ex-con drug dealer (Nikolai Lie Kaas), his drug-addicted girlfriend (Lykke May Andersen) and their infant son, who lies hungry in the most deplorable condition.  It is the exact opposite of Andreas’ life with his family.

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Tragedy strikes and the many twists and turns begin when Andreas’ son suddenly dies and in order to save his wife’s life and sanity, Andreas decides to replace his dead son with the live neglected one; the one not being cared for by Sonne and her pusher man.  It took Anna a minute to decide to accept Sofus, her new baby; however, she eventually told Andreas they were going to make it work, which made the events that came later more perplexing and interesting.

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‘A Second Chance’ is a nicely made suspense film that keeps you trying to figure out what is going to happen next, only to realize you never saw that coming.  I figured out early on what the title represented, but that was all I successfully predicted.  At the end of the screening, three of us were discussing the film and comparing notes.  It is always interesting to see how differently things are interpreted.  We saw the same film, but you could not tell.

If you are in the Los Angeles area and don’t mind reading English subtitles, take a trip to the Arena Cinelounge in Hollywood between now and July 19 and check out, ‘A Second Chance,’ a film made in collaboration with Trustnordisk and production companies, Zentropa, Zentropa International Sweden, FilmFyn and Film I Vast, Rock Salt Releasing.  It is showing at other select theaters:

marilyn smith

Marilyn Smith is a Los Angeles based writer/reviewer.  Contact her via [email protected].

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