Sat 18 Oct 2014
Quentin Tarantino or the Coen brothers would have loved to make this film. It is filled with characters from their world, transplanted in the hellish cold landscape of Scandinavia. If I am to compare it with experiences that are familiar to the ‘mainstream’ cinema viewers ‘In Order of Disappearance’ is a combination between the world of Tarantino, with his little-brained gangsters immersed in their own sub-cultured world transported in the landscape of ‘Fargo’ the original with its endless landscapes of snow and the cold that crosses the screen to almost freeze the cheeks of the viewers in the cinema theater.
As in many other gangster stories tragedy hits by hazard a regular family whose son is killed by mistake for being at the wrong place and time which intersects with a drug trafficking scheme. When the police takes the easy path of declaring the incident an accidental overdose case, the father decides to follow the path of the killers and to take revenge. The fact that he is driving a huge snow-plow will play an important role in what follows, and this is where director Hans Peter Molland seems to make another respectful bow to one of the earlier movies of Spielberg, where a huge truck is chasing a man on deserted roads. The temperature is different here.
I mentioned a number of possible quotes, and they may be real or just reflect my own cinematographic associations. Actually this is a very original and well made film, with an exquisite cinematography based on the contrast of snow and darkness, with a Scandinavian atmosphere and a very Scandinavian hero (superb acting from Stellan Skarsgård) with all the sadness of a grieving father and the resolution of making justice, even when left left with no choice. On the way the film also makes a few painful comments about the state of things in the Scandinavian society, the relation with the immigrants, the culture, the prejudices and the lack of empathy to the fellow human. It is populated with a full world of tragicomic characters, and it is fun to watch. Go and find it!