The Adirondack Film Society (AFS) Screening Series at LPCA, Version 3.0, concludes with this heartwarming, yet hugely funny comedy-drama from Sweden—yes, Sweden!—which was nominated this year for the Best Foreign-Language Film Oscar. Like so many great international films, "A MAN CALLED OVE" is a highly visual feast that translates so well to American screens—it's main setting, after all, is a contemporary suburban development—that you quickly forget you're reading subtitles.
Stepping from the pages of Fredrik Backman's international best-selling novel of the same name, Ove is the quintessential grumpy old man who lives next door. An isolated retiree with strict principles and a short fuse, who spends his days enforcing block association rules that only he cares about and visiting his wife's grave, Ove has given up on life. Enter a boisterous young family next door who accidentally flattens Ove's mailbox while moving in and earning his special brand of ire. Yet from this inauspicious beginning an unlikely friendship forms, and we come to understand Ove's past happiness and heartbreaks. What emerges is a heartwarming tale of unreliable first impressions and the gentle reminder that life is sweeter when it's shared.
One of Sweden's biggest locally produced box office hits ever, "A MAN CALLED OVE" is directed by Hannes Holm, who finds the beating heart of his source material in Swedish star Rolf Lassgård. For his affecting performance embodying the lovable curmudgeon Ove, Lassgård was honored with the Best Actor award at the 2016 Seattle International Film Festival. "A MAN CALLED OVE" was nominated in 2016 for the Academy Award for Best Foreign-Language Film, losing out to another highly acclaimed international film, "The Salesman," from Iran.
Critical raves for "A MAN CALLED OVE":
"The dopes saying that movies are dead haven't seen the moving, tender 'A Man Called Ove.'"—Village Voice
"A touching comic crowd-pleaser....Irresistible...a heartwarming tale."—Variety
"A morbidly funny and moving success. Director Holm's grip on the film's tricky, tragicomic tone is masterful."— RogerEbert.com
"Darkly funny, tragic, and ultimately heartwarming."—Entertainment Weekly
"Touching, funny and engrossing."—Detroit News
Awards & festival honors include:
• Nominated - Best Foreign Language Film and Best Achievement for Makeup & Hairstyling (Love Larson & Eva von Bahr), 89th Academy Awards®
• Winner - Best European Comedy, 29th European Film Awards
• Winner - Best Actor (Rolf Lassgård), 2016 Seattle International Film Festival Golden Space Needle Award
• Winner - Audience Award, 2016 Mill Valley Film Festival, California, and the 2016 Traverse City Film Festival, Michigan
• Winner - Audience Award for Best Film, 2016 Scottsdale International Film Festival, Arizona
• Winner - Audience Award, Best Actor (Rolf Lassgård), Best Makeup (Love Larson & Eva Von Bahr), 2016 Guldbagge Awards
Next up for the Adirondack Film Society: the 16th Annual Lake Placid Film Forum, opening Thursday, June 8th, and running through Sunday, June 11th, with screenings and other special film-related programs at LPCA, the historic Palace Theater and other Lake Placid venues. Details to be announced soon!