Thursday, 18 July 2013

Sarah Lund in Forbrydelsen; In love with a character!!!

Forbrydelsen (The Killing), Dannish TV series, a Thriller, created by Soren Sviestrup

It was my research on Viking, that lead me to Forbrydelsen. People from around the world were discussing this detective series from Denmark. So my expectations were quite high and it took some time for me to get into the feel of the story. In Forbrydelsen, the script delves seriously into 3 sides, the detectives, the victims family and the political side. The screen time is almost equally divided between these three, and it is brilliantly realistic. Morevoer, unlike in any other detective story, here a lot of impetus is given on the victims family and how a crime affects the political scenario, that too with lots of details. Naturally, it takes some time to understand a different kind of culture and set up. However, soon we are in, and there after it is a thrilling ride. Almost all the important details happen in front of the camera, lots of matters are not explained, but the viewer has to think to make it out and there is a kind of subtlety to every aspect - acting or settings or cinematography or background score and what not. I am out of words to explain, how brilliant this was. Every thing looks so normal, there is not even an iota of exaggeration on any aspect, and it will keep you hooked for the whole length (20 episodes for season 1 and 10 for 2). I have now watched both the first and second seasons of Forbrydelsen and I will give a 10/10 for season 1 and 9/10 for season 2. I think, that says a lot.

An absolutely 'out of this world' kind of creation, by Soren Sviestrup. The brain of this man should be preserved and studied. What a genius. The kind of details he delves into, for the three aspects of the story, is brilliant. Each and every character gives a normal, subtle, performance. In whole, the treatment is against all conventional ways of making a thriller. Not to ignore that he has managed a thriller, with hardly any action element. I must also say, another high point of the series is its background score, by Frans Bak. Especially, loved the piece that flows into towards the end credits.

Well, the main attraction of this series is its main CID, Sarah Lund. Yes, the main detective is a woman, an ordinary woman. She doesnt have any super heroine looks nor is she superiorly intelligent to others around her. Here is an ordinary woman, absolutely ordinary in all aspects, except that she is very intutive and she gets immersed in what she is doing, with full passion and is quite a hard worker. She doesnt even seem to have changed her clothes for days. (a jumper she wore, is said to have been a big hit across the world that it was being sold like hot cakes, online) Sarah Lund, unlike all other detectives, is not an all in one machine. She ends up making mistakes, leading to real blunders sometimes and is error prone like any normal being. As I said, this series is synonym of Normality on screen and Lund is the hall mark. She rarely even attempts a smile, and almost always have a blunt expression-less face. But whenever the camera is on her, we can see that her mind is working, thinking hard, and we feel for her. It is beyond any explanation, for me, how she managed to pull this character off so effectively.

I have watched couple of other movies, after watching Forbydelsen, but in the last days I have thought about Sarah Lund, as much as I have thought about my dear wife or about my work or about Leo Messi. She is not leaving my thoughts, from my mind. I have to say, for the first time in my life, I am in love with a character. I searched for the actor who have played her, brilliantly portrayed by Sofie Grabol, and I plan to watch more movies of her, but it is Sarah Lund who is wandering around in my thoughts. What a character? I never thought, I would ever get so much attached to a character on screen. I had liked many actors, have adored Maradona and Messi but never did I got into love with a character. I cant believe this, so forgive me for repeating.

I cant help posting a photo of Sarah Lund (This looks like a promotional photo, rather than a still from the series)

I realise that I have got too much into it, that I decided to watch the season 3, later. 

Friends, if you like to watch the best investigative movie (of course, its a TV series, but I cant think about a better movie), watch this. You can find torrents easily and make sure you download the original Dannish one, with English subtitles. Like always, it was immediately remade in America and European critics are slamming it on most points. So please avoid it.

Thursday, 11 July 2013


Viking - A Tv serial about the historical Viking Ragnar Lothbrok

Forbrydelsen - A Tv serial about an investigation on the murder of a school girl

The last time I watched a TV serial could be probably Kairalee vilasom lodge, in DD in the 80's. Nowadays TV, for me, is only for football and may be an odd movie, once in a very very long while. Couple of years before I watched the full series of Faulty Towers,(which was from mid 70's), and realised that there are gems on TV, in Europe. I have watched Faulty Towers more than 10 times now.  I always thought I will try to find similar ones, but never really pursued, watched Blackadder, though. So it was just by luck, that I saw the cd of Vikings, at my cd friend, who had mistakenly placed this cd, amongst Hollywood section and if not for its cover, I would have completely ignored it. How lucky I was. The synopsis was very brief and I decided to take it only because of my interest in European history.

Vikings were Scandinavians, sea fearers, who raided across Europe and Asia, between the 8th and 11th centuries. This TV serial is an Irish - Canadian co production for the History channel. It follows the tales of Ragnar Lothbrok, the man who first sailed west, and was feared by European rulers. But this is not just a war story. It is a brilliant picturisation of Viking Ragnar Lothbrok, and through him, his wife and children and his brother and the others, the series takes us to a different period in history, quite a different world for us. But the characteristics of these historic people has been wonderfully sketched that we can feel them all. 

I am sorry, I dont have the writing capacity to write about this series. All I can say is, friends, please do not miss this one. There are 9 episodes and it might take some time for you to get into its feel, you will soon, most probably, latest by the middle of the second episode, and then its an incredible journey. I watched the whole cd, in two sittings, in two nights. If you have time, you might even finish it in a day - above 400 minutes, I think.

The only issue (?) was, the end of the Viking Season 1, the 9th episode, is terrifically unique. I was screaming, when I realised that the cd had actually ended and there is nothing more left, for it ended at a very important point in the story. It is indescribable boldness from the side of the director, Michael Hirst, to do so. Sure we will feel yearning for the rest. And that is exactly what has happened the world over. People are desperate for the second season. I cannot wait for another few months to watch the second season.

Right at the end, I started researching on Vikings and it lead me to something else. I already knew that Denmark makes excellent movies. Now I know, they also make the best thrillers/investigation dramas, for their TV.

I have started watching another series, Forbrydelsen  (The Killing) - and couple of episodes after I am stunned by the quality of this one. I read that it has been already remade in many other countries (of course, first by USA. BBC showed the original Dannish series with subtitles), may be it would come to India too. Real classic investigation. Unlike in Indian movies where a detective or lawyer explains everything to the viewer, the whole investigation process happens in front of the camera. (I think it was only in Yudham Sei, the Tamil movie, there was even some kind of attempt at this way of story telling, rather than everything coming out by dialogues). Forbrydelsen looks like a brilliant series and I am so glad I have discovered this one, thanks to Vikings.

If you are looking for torrents, make sure it is the original Dannish one, not the American remake, which is also named as Killing.My sincere thanks to internet, that I can watch all these pieces of art from distant world.