Oslo, August 31st

Oslo, August 31st ★★★★★

Oslo, August 31st is a crushingly beautiful, humbling and depressing film about a day in the life of a recovering addict who spends his day roaming around the city of Oslo, visiting old flames and spending time with his friends.

The film is tightly edited - there are no unnecessary scenes; the story unfolds in a fluid way as we come to know and understand Anders, the aforementioned recovering addict. The beauty of the movie makes you come to see how Anders sees the world, and why he feels at a deep level that he can't go back, and nor can he go forward.

Anders' performance is very subtle and realistic, avoiding any sort of cinematic melodrama despite the heavy nature of the material and Joachim Trier's direction is modest, letting things play out almost as if we were watching a documentary.

The film ends with a montage of images, as it begun, but this time with locations that we've seen Anders visit throughout the movie – a brilliant montage to end on.

Utterly convincing, captivating and emotional, it's a shame this film hasn't made more noise because it certainly deserves a lot more attention.

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