June 15, 2004

Nói albinói- A Movie Review

An Icy Digression Into The Frozen North
By Fred H. Arm
Take an alienated, bald, Albino teenager named Nói (Tómas Lemarquis) in the frozen fjord of northern Iceland and blend together an estranged ineffectual father while a grandmother who does not say much is raising him and the story is destined to be tragic and dark. Although Nói is well intentioned, he lacks motivation and is prone to having spells of exceptional bad luck. He is disruptive at school if he bothers to show up at all. Ultimately he is expelled and his alcoholic dad finds Nói a job working for a priest in a graveyard. As the scenario unfolds, he woos another somber and beautiful teen named Iris (Elin Hansdóttir), who works as a gas station attendant and café clerk. His relationship to Iris appears to be the only thing going well in Nói 's life; still it is just a fragile illusion.

It is winter in Iceland, such that the fjord is cut off from the outside world, while surrounded by an ominous mountain, and buried under a shroud of snow. Beautiful shots of glaciers and chilly seasides allow the tedium of this desolation to be a lot more tolerable. If you have ever been in a dead town out in the boonies somewhere, this one is even more comatose by comparison. It is hardly surprising that everyone is so somber and alienated from one another during the dark three-hour days of winter.

Please remember that this is not simply another typical bored teenager film--underneath it all Nói seems to have real promise, although his motivation is virtually non-existent. The walls of snow and ice surrounding his village give the illusion of a natural prison. Nói’s desperate plans to break out fail miserably during a ludicrous failed bank robbery and an aborted car theft, further adding to his despair.

The movie directed by Dagur Kári is largely bleak and sometimes slow moving, yet it is temperamental, seductive, and distinctive. There are no cheap thrills, sexy scenes, car crashes, or violence, however the cinematography and the unfolding human drama draw you in like bees to honey and hold you there to it’s amazing finish. It is not until a natural disaster so totally shatter Nói’s universe that the film begins to offer the hope of a new beginning for Nói.

Nói is completely believable for anyone who ever recalls being a teenager. He is the embodiment of a disturbing reflection of the aspirations, naivety and unmanageable emotions many teens feel at that age. This film kept me enthralled and touched in equal measures right down to its startling climax. This movie is a must see for anyone who appreciates that life is different when you are just 17.

Posted by fredarm at June 15, 2004 03:41 PM

I am one who placed the comment on Imbd. So I essentially plagerized myself!

Posted by: Fred Arm at June 30, 2004 06:21 PM

Having fun plagiarizing reviews from the IMDb, Fred?

Posted by: adam at June 30, 2004 07:25 AM
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