“Beautiful Beings,” the sophomore movie from creator/director Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson, has been chosen to signify Iceland on the Oscars this yr. Given its themes of teenage angst and topical exploration of the rising violence amongst the youth of Iceland, it’s easy to see why this coming-of-age drama was chosen over the far-superior, however harder interval piece “Godland” from director Hlynur Pálmason. In his bleak film, Guðmundsson combines the kitchen sink drama of rising up in a cycle of violence and/or poverty and the magical realism of teenage fever targets, with blended outcomes.
We first meet outcast Balli (Áskell Einar Pálmason) as tight, fluid camerawork follows him as he sulks his means by a school hallway proper right into a classroom, a teacher remaining merely out of physique. This technique locations the viewers squarely in Balli’s miserable footwear, recalling the mannequin of Andrea Arnold, although Guðmundsson and cinematographer Sturla Brandth Grøvlen forgo Arnold’s signature Academy ratio for a wider physique, dulling its affect. However, the flourishing of this style is abandoned early in the film when a post-college bully eventually sees Bali in his home and beats him badly, giving way to nightly revelations about the rise of Iceland’s violent youth. information has been created.
Here the perspective switches to Adi (Birgil Dagur Bjarkasson). Adi (Birgilda Gurbyarkasson), while watching a show on TV with her new mother, Gudrun (Anita Briem), is narrated of her disturbing dreams about her friend. I opened the movie with the description. Her sincere interest in children is indifferently met by her son, who calls the bullied boy a geek. ) discovers Burr, whose face is covered with a protective face mask covering the wound. He’s thinking of ending his life. After lighting a cigarette, insulting him, and provoking a heavy drinker, this gang of misfits welcomes him into the gang. All the boys come from broken homes, dissatisfied with the peculiar strategy described by Tolstoy. And while each boy’s backstory is known through Addie’s narration, the film primarily focuses on Bali and Addie’s budding relationship. Bring out the guardian. His biggest flaw is that his divorced but wealthy father and mother are involved in UFOs. Palmasson and Bjarkasson, the teenage actors of Bali and Adi, create a palpable push-pull chemistry.
When the boys discover that Bali’s mother is virtually absent and his stepfather is in prison, he makes his run-down house their headquarters. Groveren’s digital cameras remain flies on the walls while the boys enjoy youthful debauchery, smoke cigarettes, make drugs from household items, fight and watch pornography. . There is a hierarchy of violence throughout the group, but it provides each boy with the means of neighborhood and safety from the greater violence that awaits them in every home and rival gang.
In the second half of Beautiful Beings, Addi’s goals evolve into waking nightmares and premonitions as he adds a supernatural layer to his story. Unfortunately, there isn’t much originality here, but it’s nice to see what looks like an homage to 1990’s Nietzka his Keene fantasy film Juniper His Tree. Guðmundsson struggles to keep the clashing tones cohesive, eventually abandoning all magic and kitchen-sink realism for the brooding rest of the film.