CSI:Reykjavik! Richly atmospheric police thriller from Iceland. "Fans of the genre will thank the film for an infusion of ice-cold new blood." — Time Out NY
Screened as part of NZIFF 2008
The hard-bitten tone, the worn-down characters and a majestic CinemaScope eye for the bracingly bleak Icelandic locations make this one richly atmospheric detective thriller.
"A blockbuster in its native Iceland, adapted from Arnaldur Indriðason's 2000 bestseller, this somber, sinewy police procedural by the talented actor-writer-director Baltasar Kormákur (101 Reykjavik, The Sea) could pass for an episode of CSI: Reykjavik, only with less high-tech gimmickry, more pavement-pounding, and a head-clearing view of crime as anything but a cool diversion. The discovery of a bludgeoned body sets seen-it-all cop Erlendur and his squad on the trail of a decades-old mystery involving rape allegations, a corrupt small-town constable, and his trio of thug enforcers. Meanwhile, in a seemingly unconnected side plot, a dead girl's grieving father immerses himself in shady doings at a genetic research facility. The sharing of genomic and medical data - an ongoing controversy in a country of only 300,000 residents - stoked the movie's popularity at home, where the issue of who has the right to control (or reveal) personal histories resonates strongly." — Jim Ridley, Village Voice
"The strength of the film, as with David Fincher's Se7en, lies in its utterly unique sense of style and mise-en-scène... Even the characters' frozen breath hanging in the air feels shaped and designed to add to the sense of doom. Topping everything off is a lovely, hollow-sounding score of men's choral voices... The vision of Jar City is total and complete; fans of the thriller genre will thank the film for an infusion of ice-cold new blood." — Joshua Rothkopf, Time Out NY