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77 Ratings

Winter Brothers


Directed by Hlynur Palmason
Denmark, Iceland, 2017


A brother odyssey set in a worker environment during a cold winter. We follow two brothers, their routines, habits, rituals and a violent feud that erupts between them and another family.

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Winter Brothers Directed by Hlynur Palmason
On a character level, “Winter Brothers” is only arresting in individual moments: a brutally staged brawl in the buff between Johan and Emil, or Emil sweetly performing a trick of chemistry for Anna. Mr. Palmason’s showy technique, magnetic on its own, ultimately seems like a way of adding mystery to a story that, like Emil, is content with having no place to go.
June 27, 2018
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Pálmason can occasionally get bogged down in his ambiguous leanings; his impression-based approach doesn’t exactly serve well a potentially pivotal but vaguely treated secondary character like Anna (or even Johan, who, title aside, doesn’t leave much of a mark). But many moments attest to the high ceiling of Pálmason’s abilities.
June 26, 2018
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The film’s formal compositions and clangy sound design heighten a tone of absurdist banality, while Hove’s passion gives Emil a necessary, and excruciating, humanity.
May 01, 2018
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