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2010 Heartland Film FestivalRating: 4 of 5 yaps

Among Us

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Fantasy only seems like fantasy when it’s juxtaposed against our world. Dragons flying could seem standard until you look out your window. Among Us does an excellent job of creating a cold realism and then slowly introduces in the incredible.

This is a Swedish film starring Michael Nvquist (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo series) and Izabellas Scorupco as Ernst and Cecilia who are suffering. Their child is in the hospital in critical condition. They are both anxious and doubting, but they have no choice but to continue on with their lives.

Then a new man introduces himself into their lives in order to help them. He calls himself Walter (Tchéky Karyo) and Cecilia finds warmth in his presence. Ernst just becomes more frustrated whenever Walter tries to emotionally intervene. Words are never said and accusations are never made, but it’s clear to everyone that Walter is not exactly what he seems.

It seems like I’m giving away too many clues about the movie but writer/director Johan Brisinger does not play the tale out as suspenseful in that regard. Think enough about the title and the mystery is solved. Instead he wisely keeps it focused on the family dynamic and that creates for a better payoff. Nvquist and Scorupco are excellent as the grieving parents who don’t fall back on expected responses.

As with a lot of Scandinavian films, this movie is slow and a bit minimalistic. That approach could leave some audience members cold (pun intended), but in this case it creates a wonderful balance towards the possibly heightened premise. By the end it has this surprisingly emotional reaction. The movie takes risks, but Brisinger pulls them off.

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One Response to “Among Us”

  1. Mary Forster says:

    In the closing scene, when Alexander regains conciousness…and everyone is so happy…..then they pan out and I was not sure if Alexander really does recover or if he actually died at the end…after all , the Grim Reaper did give him what I assumed was the kiss of death…or maybe I have it all wrong…or because the parents regained their focus and their love…was Alexander then able to recover…or die?