Oslo, August 31st

Oslo, August 31st ★★★★★

This review may contain spoilers. I can handle the truth.

This review may contain spoilers.

... 'cause FUCK, I keep watching masterpieces lately. Maybe I should get my b-movie vibe going again...

But seriously, this film, as simple as it is, tells the tale of a drug addicts day off from the clinic in which he resides. He uses it to go to a job interview and meet up with his friends.

The whole film is littered with either moments of him talking, pure silence or, even more beautiful, him listening to other peoples conversations. But all these actions he performs back in the real world don't seem to make him feel any better. He keeps on thinking of drugs, suicide and all the things that have gone wrong because of his behavior.
It is at these points that I feel so strongly connected with this guy and I hope I'm not the only one in this. Because this is not necessarily a story about a drugaddict, it's a story about how difficult life can get and how easy it is to fail it. We've all had these moments where we fucked up big time and immediately after we did those things we say: "If I could do it again, I would've done it differently." And we believe that. But the fact remains that we very probably would not. We fail and fate problem wanted to let us to fail. It is a necessary tool of this world that teaches us what to do and what not to do. The only problem is that not everybody wants to learn this. Or at least not all the time...

And that's what's happening to Anders (perfectly portrayed by Anders Danielsen Lie) and what happens to lots of us as well. We fail and we know we fail, but we don't know how to correct our mistakes.

This is also poignantly translated in the scene where Anders flirts with a student he met at a party and sees that she is destined to end up like another one night stand when he is so desperately and obviously trying to find real love and a real life.

Therefore the final scene may come as a bit of a cliche. But that's when people only look at it with a glance. They see Anders succumb to the urge for drugs as he injects some heroin into his arm. But what sets this otherwise cliche ending apart from other drug based dramas, are the scenes that follow it: shots from the places where Anders has been on his free day and shots from the city he has spent it in. The shots show a calm city as if it was just like any other day. Nobody noticed Andersens failure. Nobody noticed anybodys failure. The city keeps on moving, even when some of it's inhabitants make bad mistakes. Even when you or I think we've done the worst thing imaginable, the town, the city, the world just keeps on rolling.

The question is: is that a good thing? Or a bad thing?

Thanks to Gramercy Riff for recommending this film. Indeed a perfect film for the emotional-gutpunch list.

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