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Druk

Another Round

Denmark / Sweden / Netherlands 2020
produced by
Kasper Dissing, Sisse Graum Jørgensen for Zentropa, Film i Väst, Topkapi Films, Det Danske Filminstitut, TV2 Danmark, Eurimages, Nederlands Filmfonds, Svenska Filminstitutet
directed by Thomas Vinterberg
starring Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen, Magnus Millang, Lars Ranthe, Maria Bonnevie, Helene Reingaard Neumann, Susse Wold, Magnus Sjørup, Silas Cornelius Van, Albert Rudbeck Lindhardt, Martin Greis-Rosenthal, Frederik Winther Rasmussen, Aksel Vedsegaard, Aya Grann, Gustav Sigurth Jeppesen, Freja Bella Lindahl, Mercedes Claro Schelin, Cassius Aasav Browning, Maria Ovi, Clara Phillipson, Lucas Helt Mortensen, Oskar Kirk Damsgaard, Niels Jørgensen, Le Münster-Swendsen, Michael Asmussen, Christina Hildebrandt, Thomas Guldberg Madsen, Per Otto Bersang Rasmussen, Dorte Højsted, Morten Jørgensen, Morten Thunbo, Jens Basse Dam, Max Kaysen Høyrup, Waldemar Beer Hansen, Matti Rochler, Milas Hansen, Carl David Schubert Holm-Nielsen
written by Thomas Vinterberg, Tobias Lindholm

review by
Mike Haberfelner

Martin's (Mads Mikkelsen) just your typical frustrated teacher: "Forming the minds of his students" just bores him immensely and they're equally bored with him, at home he hardly sees his wife Anika (Maria Bonnevie), who works nightshifts, thus goes out when he comes in and vice versa, and being a father has been more fulfilling as well when the kids were still younger. And then, when having dinner with his friends and colleagues Tommy (Thomas Bo Larsen), Nikolaj (Magnus Millang) and Peter (Lars Ranthe) and they all get a bit tipsy, one of them brings up the idea that man is actually supposed to have 0.5 ‰ blood alcohol to come to his full potential - so Martin has a drink before class the next day, and wouldn't you know it, class goes much better. He tells Tommy, Nikolaj and Peter, and they agree to turn drinking on the job into a scientific experiment. The experiment goes very well, they all become better teachers when a little tipsy, and also become more popular with their students, and even at home, things start to go better. Of course, there are minor slip-ups, like Tommy's alcohol stash being found and him almost failing to divert suspicion, but otherwise, things are good. So far, our heroes have kept the blood alcohol at 0.5 ‰, but now they agree to increase it - for purely scientific reasons they convince themselves of course. Now things still seem to go alright, but eventually rumours of drinking at school make the rounds, and when Tommy shows up roaringly drunk to a teachers' conference, he gets into trouble. So our friends are ready for round three of their experiment, getting no-holds-barred drunk - and that's where the problems really start ...

 

What's so refreshing about this film is that despite it's about drinking, it doesn't judge, there's no final moral, no "don't drink" sticker tagged onto it - in fact, while the film ends reasonably happy, it has our heroes (those who survived) celebrating with a drink. But that's not to say that the film in any form or way actually supports alcoholism, as it clearly doesn't - it just tells a story about four individuals who have lost their way long before the movie sets in, and who decide on a stupid idea which has some rather ok outcomes - and other not-so-good ones, but the point is, it tells a story, with no heroes, no villains, no foregone conclusions. And while Druk certainly doesn't take things as far as the classic La Grance Bouffe, a film it shares motives with, it also has a slightly subversive edge to it, and also is brought to life by some pretty brilliant performances - and is just a joy to watch.

 

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review © by Mike Haberfelner

 

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special appearances by
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