One of the most discussed September releases was the film “Dangerous Friend,” released in Norway. This novelty of foreign cinema actually attracts the viewer’s attention, especially if you watch a very interesting trailer. Although the film’s ratings on specialized services are very high, the film caused a wide public response. Some consider it a true masterpiece of cinematic art, while others do not see anything in it that could be captivating or thought-provoking. But whatever impression the tape leaves behind, it is worthy of our attention and analysis. Let’s try to figure out what meaning the director of the film “Dangerous Friend” put into his creation.
The film was written and directed by Norwegian Viljar Bøe. This is his first work, the duration of which is close to a full-length film. Before that, he was the author of not very large projects that did not attract the attention of mass audiences. Some of his works, however, were marked by very positive reviews from experts.
As for the actors nominated for the main roles, they were Gar Løkke and Katrin Epstad. Although the actors cannot be called mediocre, little is known about them. They did not take part in large projects that are heard by almost every viewer.
The main character, Christian, is a young guy who can hardly be called “stood out from the crowd” or an extraordinary person. At first glance, he is absolutely the same as all the people around him. He doesn’t particularly like to get out of the house and doesn’t strive to make a group of friends. He most often meets representatives of the fair sex online. The conversation with one of the girls was very lively, and Christian hastened to invite his new acquaintance to the restaurant. She agrees, and Christian rushes to go on a date with her.
In the morning, a girl whose name is Singrid wakes up in a guy’s bed. The young man is still sleeping, and she is left to her own devices. Singrid meets Christian’s pet at the house. It turns out to be a man who dresses up in a dog costume and behaves accordingly. Of course, the girl is not happy with this kind of friendship. But she falls deeply in love with a guy, so for the sake of a relationship with him she has to come to terms with this strangeness. The romance between the lovers develops, but then Singrid gets to know her partner and his “dog” better…
There is no intrigue as such in the plot of the film. The dog friend, to whom the viewer’s attention is riveted, is shown as he is, from the very first minutes of the film. However, the viewer sees it already on the poster, so there is no mystery for him. The creators, apparently, are well aware that they failed to add anything catchy to the film, apart from the dog costume around which the advertising campaign was built.
The first half of the film is marked by very successful acting. They very believably portray the awkwardness and shyness characteristic of young couples who have just entered into a relationship. However, what helps in this, apparently, is not acting talent, but something opposite: they fail to fully reveal themselves in scenes that require emotionality. Due to this, the overall impression of the picture for a sophisticated viewer may be spoiled.
The director and screenwriter, however, did not contribute to the development of the characters. Instead, he uses tired clichés (the rich man and the rich man’s lover), without allowing the viewer to connect with the images. The full footage, which was apparently used to reveal some deep thought, was used in the most wrong way. It is obvious that he wanted to explore themes such as toxic relationships, hypocrisy, women’s rights and liberties in the film. But he failed to do it in such a manner that the viewer could take something away for himself.
A film that can’t be saved
If you imagine that the film was a short film, it would still not help him. The “scary” moments, plot twists and endings of the film are so predictable that the viewer can say some of the lines before the characters themselves. The end of the film is even more upsetting, because in the last minutes at least something resembling a thriller begins. But instead of making an impression on the viewer and developing the action that began into an interesting ending, the director disappoints us with a boring ending, which seemed to be written in a hurry. The film ended as banally as the plot developed.
The film is definitely not suitable for the mass audience: among all the predictable and clichéd plot points, inept acting and weak script, it is difficult to discern any social implications. Perhaps the project will be appreciated by critics who will be able to discern deep subtext from minor comments. “Dangerous Friend” shows that Böhe is still a long way from becoming a feature film director. Although the project has some advantages, they pale in comparison to a number of serious shortcomings.
Is it worth watching the movie “Dangerous Friend”? Perhaps the film is worth seeing just for reference: this work, as they say, is “one time”.