Friday, March 23, 2012

Oslo, 31. august

Rarely are films based on burning issues like drug addiction are so well made as Oslo, 31. august (international title: Oslo, August 31st): the film goes beyond addiction itself and rather explore what each man searches, the quest for some kind of meaning to one’s life, a quest that is present in the lives of each of us and which takes different forms of different addictions. Some are put into a corner or a cage by the society, and others aren’t.

The film is lit up by a stunningly brilliant performance by the lead actor, Anders Danielsen Lie as his namesake. Relying heavily on close-ups, the central question over today’s society, the Western society in particular, occurs somewhere in the middle, when Anders recalls the life he grew up to, a home wherein “liberty” becomes another religion, where the bywords are “free” and “artist,” and where the new rule is to not to have rules. Anders stands as an accusation to all the society: that where ethics and principles are often confounded with rules and attack on liberty. The only other solution that he finds is to become like them, which he would refuse to, finally gaining true freedom in his final act.

The film reveals beautifully how deceptions are unmasked and when they are unmasked, we realize how we would have liked to be remaining duped always. Everyone else has got something - that is what Anders thinks. But on encountering them, he will only realize that they are only bluffing at living life: what they are living is only lives. But they are as lonely and as angry as Anders is, and tired, for unlike Anders they have accepted contentment with being hollow.

In a world where ideas have taken the place of love, Anders and the puppets surrounding him are only inevitable.

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