O’Horten (Bent Hamer, 2007): Norway | Germany | France

Reviewed by Antara Medina at the Arclight AFI Film Festival Hollywood.

O’Horten is a soothing comedy. Odd Horten is 67 and just retiring from his job at the train station. For 40 years he has had the same daily routine. When he finally retires, he finds that there is a whole world out there off the tracks. He learns to relate and try all sorts of things, from breaking into a house and getting  stuck in a funny little pickle, to wearing women’s high heels, to being in the passenger seat of a car with an old blindfolded driver. He starts living his life in a new way with the last one not far behind him. To be old and retired, with no wife or children, forces one to either do absolutely nothing or–if you’re Odd–to try to find something for yourself to do, to get you up each morning. Odd goes through all these events not like a normal person would, but instead with ease and grace. This movie will bring a smile to anyone’s face.

The cinematography is excellent and quite simple.  In the beginning of the film there are a couple shots of going through a dark tunnel and ending up in a snow filled world. This is a great metaphorical portrayal of Odd. This image is lonely, not necessarily sad, but just bland, amusing, and soft. The tunnel is the change that Odd will encounter. This film is a witty and sweet, it will make you feel warm inside

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