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‘Border’ First Trailer: Ali Abbasi’s Offbeat Oscar Contender Is a Vibrant Story of Trolls in Love

The Swedish entry for this year's best foreign-language Oscar is an unexpected story about two outsiders who find each other.

border cannes

“Border”

John Ajvide Lindqvist knows a thing or two about crafting tales about outsiders in love, so it’s good news that the author behind vampire cult classic “Let the Right One In” turned his attention to another misbegotten segment of the (maybe?) mythical underclass: trolls. It’s even better news that Lindqvist’s story “Gräns” has been translated to the big screen by a filmmaker with the same affection for outsiders, thanks to Ali Abbasi and his festival hit “Border.”

Essentially a love story about trolls (maybe?), the film follows customs inspector Tina (Eva Melander, who transformed herself for the role) who possesses some unique abilities when it comes to her nose — in short, she can sniff out not just illegal contraband, but also human emotions. When Tina meets a man who shares some of her more, ahem, unique facial features, the world suddenly opens up to her in staggering (and weirdly heartwarming) new waves. Last month, Sweden chose the film as its official entry into this year’s Oscar race for best foreign-language film.

In his glowing Cannes review of the vibrant love story, IndieWire’s Eric Kohn wrote, “Iranian-born director Abbasi’s sophomore effort … builds out such an unusual premise that it risks devolving into quirky inanity, but Abbasi grounds the narrative in an emotional foundation even as it flies off the rails. … The result is a kind of gothic romance that wouldn’t look out of place in Guillermo del Toro’s oeuvre.”

Neon picked up “Border” at this year’s Cannes Film Festival and will release the film on October 26. The film will also screen in the coming days at this year’s New York Film Festival.

Check out the first trailer for “Border” below, thanks to Entertainment Weekly.

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