Entertainment Weekly

Stay Connected

Subscribe

Advertise With Us

Learn More

Skip to content

Article

The Celebration

Posted on

The Celebration

type:
Movie
Current Status:
In Season
mpaa:
R
performer:
Henning Moritzen, Ulrich Thomsen
director:
Thomas Vinterberg
genre:
Foreign Language, Drama

We gave it an A-

Dogma 95, the no-frills aesthetic cooked up by a quartet of Danish filmmakers that decries the artificial smoothness of studio filmmaking, may yet turn out to be little more than a pompous bid for attention, but this ultra-naturalistic entry makes a mighty convincing case for its merits. Working with a surefire family-skeleton premise — a bitter son chooses the occasion of his father’s 60th-birthday party to belatedly accuse the man, before all assembled, of childhood sexual abuse — director-cowriter Thomas Vinterberg uses lurching handheld camera work and murky ambient lighting as witty, unsettling counterpoints to the characters’ dogged unflappability. It’s a lesson that Hollywood would do well to learn: Nothing sparks the imagination quite like a load of self-imposed restrictions.

Comments