Denmark seems like such a peaceful, harmonious place that it's hard to understand where Danish filmmakers get all of their angst. But time after time, the country's cadre of talented directors find and examine the darker side of life, making what seems like an idyllic culture appear rife with drama and emotional torment. This year's Oscar winner for Best Foreign Film, In a Better World, is a great example of this. Susanne Bier's drama is an emotionally dense examination of how people deal with injustice and the ways that revenge can manifest itself. So this is not a lighthearted afternoon at the theater. The script by Anders Thomas Jensen takes us from a refugee camp in Africa to small-town Denmark, framing the themes in vastly different contexts and giving us a profound glimpse of how injustice can wreak havoc on an otherwise idealistic psyche. Mikeal Persbrand delivers a hardcore, affecting performance as a doctor and father who wrestles with injustice in his work and at home--it's hard to take your eyes off of him. Expect to leave the theater in silence as you process this powerful film. In a Better World screens at the Modern Museum of Fort Worth, 3200 Darnell St., on Friday at 6 and 8:15 p.m. , Saturday at 5 p.m. and Sunday at 11:45 a.m., 2 and 4:15 p.m. Tickets are $8.50, $6.50 for Modern members. Visit themodern.org/magnolia.
May 6-8, 2011