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September 02

A Film Review by Alex Grant
DRAGONFLIES [Norway, 2002]

Dragonflies Director Marius Holst Writer Nikolaj Frobenius, Marius Holst, based on the book by Ingvar Ambjornsen Stars Kim Bodnia, Mikael Persbrandt, Maria Bonnevie, Thomas Skarpordet, Tintin Anderzon, Tord Peterson, Shanti Roney, Anastasios Soulis, Ulla-Britt Norman-Olsson, Willy Karlsson Running time 110 minutes Country Norway Year 2001

This pale shadow of the films that it vainly attempts to emulate -Polanski’s Knife in the Water and his later Cul-de-sac. It takes the same theme and menacing ménage-a-trois set in a remote place, island, boat or isolated farm house. It is best described as the cinematic version of that old ugly, rubbery Swedish toy the Smurf/S.M.U.R.F. ‘S’ for shallow, ‘M’ for moody, ‘U’ for useless. ‘R’ for ridiculous and ‘F’ for futile……

Director Marius Holst and his cast Maria Bonnevie, Kim Bodnia, and Mikael Persbrandt are simply not equal to the task of creating more than an ersatz version of the classic Three’s A Crowd psychodrama.
During WW2 ersatz coffee was made out of ground acorns, ugh !
DRAGONFLIES apes the rudiments of the micro-genre best exemplified in the work of Polanski, but it lacks all finesse, stranding us with a bearded oaf ‘Eddie’, a skanky former druggie ‘Maria’ and a shifty ex-con capable of all manner of manipulation ‘Kullmann’. This trio of misfits are about as ominous as The Three Stooges.except they spend their time fishin’ fightin’ and fornicatin’ in the backwoods, ad nauseam. A dog dies, a retarded boy is put at peril, a home is invaded, the oaf falls off his roof whilst replacing tiles in a temper tantrum. Now that is entertainment - none of this Hollywood crap!

DRAGONFLIES is the kind of truly inept film that is best shunted to the 2:00 a.m. slot on the Showcase channel. It has no viable place in a serious film festival.

© Alex Grant October 2002

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