You’ll likely need some context for this one, so let’s rewind. In 2008, our Editor-in-Chief named Norwegian director Joachim Trier‘s 2008 debut feature, “Reprise” the #1 film of the year, over things like Steven Soderbergh‘s “Che,” the fantastic documentary “Man On Wire” and works of elegiac Malick-ian beauty like “Silent Light” (holy crap, not only was 2008 not only a fantastic year for films, it was an amazing one for foreign films). A bold movie, perhaps a naive one full of woozy drunk passion, but nonetheless, Trier’s electric ode to youthful restlessness, friendship and ambition is a striking debut that none of us have easily forgotten.
Ever since that year, we’ve been eagerly awaiting Trier’s follow-up, and were were pleasantly surprised to see that his sophomore effort, “Oslo, August 31st,” is not only complete, it’s playing in competition at this year’s Cannes Film Festival. What’s it about? We’ve got details and photos below the jump, but suffice to say it does once again feature Anders Danielsen Lie, the “non-actor” who basically got his start with “Reprise.”
The picture stars Lie, and Norwegian actors Hans Olav Brenner, Ingrid Olava, Malin Crépin and Petter With and the simple logline delivered so far is, “One man, one city, 24 hours. ‘Oslo, August 31st’ is a portrait of contemporary Oslo. A visually striking and quietly shattering drama about a man in deep existential crisis.”
OK, that doesn’t tell you much, but the logline for “Reprise” — two competitive friends, fueled by literary aspirations and youthful exuberance, endure the pangs of love, depression and burgeoning careers — wasn’t that much more concrete and look how fabulous that turned out. A lot of the excellent “Reprise” team is back including co-writer Eskil Vogt, cinematographer Jakob Ihre and editor Olivier Bugge Coutté (the editing of that film is phenomenal). The picture is due for release in Norway on August 31st. We’re sure it will likely hit North America at the Toronto International Film Festival in the fall as well. Can’t wait for this one. Hopefully we’re not building up too much in our minds. [Match Factory/Norwegian Film Institute]