The Hunt (Jagten)(2012)
The lie is spreading.
A Danish kindergarten teacher (Mads Mikkelsen, Best Actor winner at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival) becomes the victim of his village’s collective paranoia when he is falsely accused of abusing a child. From writer-director Thomas Vinterberg (Festen).... More
"Following a tough divorce, 40-year-old Lucas has a new girlfriend, a new job and is in the process of reestablishing his relationship with his teenage son, Marcus. But things go awry. Not a lot. Just a passing remark. A random lie. And as the snow falls and the Christmas lights are lit, the lie spreads like an invisible virus. The shock and mistrust gets out of hand, and the small community suddenly finds itself in a collective state of hysteria, while Lucas fights a lonely fight for his life and dignity." (Cannes Film Festival)Hide
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BY Matt Glasby Flicks Writer
Although it never shirks from showing how unfounded suspicions destroy lives, this excellent drama from Danish director Thomas Vinterberg (Festen) and writer Tobias Lindhom (A Hijacking) has a wonderfully sly sense of understatement about it. There's no music, except to show the passing of time, no melon-smashing SFX when punches fly, and although events do spiral out of control, the method of recounting them never does.... More
Lucas (Mikkelsen) is a kindergarten helper loved by the children. One morning little Klara (Anika Wedderkop) gives him a card; later it's a kiss. Then she tells his boss, “I hate Lucas, he has a willie!” It's an innocent comment, but the seeds are sown. The townsfolk believe the worst of Lucas, and so begins a forest fire of accusations and recriminations that threatens to burn everything down.
Although he is better known for playing larger-than-life villains (Le Chiffre in Casino Royale, TV's Hannibal Lector), Mikkelsen gives a subtle, dignified performance. Young Wedderkop is just as good, a sad, confused little girl at the centre of a storm she doesn't understand. “I forgot to look where I was going, all of a sudden I was here,” she says when she meets Lucas outside the shops. It's a good metaphor for the unintended horrors of what happens next.
Like Lucas's hunting buddies – always egging each other on to jump into freezing lakes or play childish drinking games, the community functions with a frightening pack mentality. And once the pack turns on you, as Lucas discovers, there's no turning back.Hide