Cleansing my palate

I have been seeing some terrible movies lately, but March brings the European Union Film Festival to the Gene Siskel Center in Chicago. I’m now halfway through my program of six films at EUFF (I started with Sweden’s Behind Blue Skies). This is my first time dealing with this festival and while I really like the slate of films (there are sixty-four so tons of options) and that the fest is spread out throughout the month, I would definitely recommend buying all your tickets in advance if you ever feel like hitting up the EUFF. I got mine all at once and have avoided standing in the ludicrous box office lines. The Siskel Center is a bit cramped on lobby space so it can get kind of uncomfortable when the box office line is long and people are waiting to get into a screening, too. Tickets in advance, that’s the key. More dual reviews! Continue reading “Cleansing my palate”

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The Skarsgards must be Sweden’s premier acting family

The UK has the Redgraves, the US has the Barrymores and Sweden has the Skarsgards.  I caught the newest film of twenty-year-old Bill Skarsgard—son of Stellan, younger brother of Alexander—last night at the European Union Film Festival. Called Behind Blue Skies, it details a pivotal summer in the life of Martin (Skarsgard), a high-rise dwelling student from a wealthy section of Stockholm. It’s important that you know Martin lives in a high rise so that you know he isn’t wealthy, like everyone else in his district. Martin’s best friend, Micke (Adam Palsson), is wealthy, however. Early on we meet Micke’s family as his father, Ulf (Rasmus Troedsson), brings home a new color TV. Behind Blue Skies is set in the mid-1970’s and director Hannes Holm perfectly captures the class difference between Micke and Martin in their reaction to the new TV. Micke could care less. He basically greets his dad with, “Another one?” as Martin’s eyes pop out of his head. There’s a brief struggle deciding what to do with the new TV. Ultimately, Ulf offers it to Martin. The new TV? No, an older one they’ll throw away in order to use the new one. Continue reading “The Skarsgards must be Sweden’s premier acting family”