Pétanque fanatic Rikard Boberg was born disabled, standing just a few feet tall and hardly able to speak. However, the ambitious hero does not let this hold him back – particularly when it comes to his beloved ball game, and a reunion with his confused mother.
The Swedish Johannes Nyholm took everyone by surprise with this original debut feature, a recent festival standout where he fuses social realism with fantasy, adding a renovated Dogme spirit to the mix. The result is welcomingly strange, a rare fable of infectious optimism, likely to win you over.
I found this a deeply moving film in which fantasy merges with the harsh and sublime highlights of a life not ordinary. The focus sharpens in the film to reveal who are the real monsters, and the humanity and community of the outcasts of society is the backdrop to outrageous dreams come true for our unlikely hero. The landscape is technicolour sublime. Troll becomes butterfly.
A true original! Social realism, Nordic fantasy, humour, sport (well, pétanque..) and a humane spirit that values the lives and aspirations of its characters. Its cast of actors are mostly disabled themselves. A shame that previous reviewers did not find much to like, but for those who do, its quirky humour illuminates a captivating theme of friendship, love and solidarity. ... and pétanque.