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      Flickering Lights

      2000 1h 49m Action Comedy Crime Drama List
      70% Tomatometer 10 Reviews 90% Audience Score 2,500+ Ratings Four gangsters steal a fortune from their boss and hide out in a small farmhouse, where each comes to the realization they would like to stay there and open a small restaurant. Read More Read Less

      Critics Reviews

      View All (10) Critics Reviews
      Stephen Hunter Washington Post It's funny and violent and fast and, er, Danish. Aug 8, 2003 Full Review Desson Thomson Washington Post Mostly, it exults in its inspired potential rather than any brilliant results. Aug 8, 2003 Full Review Kevin Thomas Los Angeles Times A bleak male-bonding comedy that's a queasy blend of brutal humor and escalating sentimentality, it is overlong, heavy-handed, slow and unpersuasive. Rated: 1/5 Mar 27, 2003 Full Review Film Threat Rated: 4/5 Dec 6, 2005 Full Review Film Threat Rated: 4/5 Jul 20, 2004 Full Review Michael Tunison Boxoffice Magazine Since the ultimate direction of the gangster plot is obvious from the beginning, the filmmaker is counting on the freshness and unpredictability of such moments to keep us engaged -- a gamble that pays off only modestly. Rated: 2.5/5 Mar 31, 2003 Full Review Read all reviews

      Audience Reviews

      View All (154) audience reviews
      R 9 Almost unsure as to what I think about 'Flickering Lights'. The film, to me anyway, has such an odd feel to it throughout, there's a weird mix of story elements and I'm not convinced it all works - and yet, I actually really like it... I think. In parts, though, if I closed my eyes it would sound like one sorta movie and if I covered my ears it would look like a different one. What I mean is, the music doesn't quite match the onscreen events. Is the music good? Sure, but the more dramatic pieces don't fit with the rough and tumble nature of the plot. With that said, I do really love how the film begins/ends and how it all comes full circle - coolly done. The flick utilises flashbacks excellently, also. Cast-wise, it's absolutely solid. Søren Pilmark is an able lead, while Ulrich Thomsen, Mads Mikkelsen and Nikolaj Lie Kaas, among a few others, are good behind Pilmark. I will say that the latter's part of the storyline with Sofie Gråbøl was off, it wraps up disappointingly... especially given that moment with Pilmark's Torkild, which should've sealed the opposite outcome. Interesting that Thomsen, Mikkelsen and director Anders Thomas Jensen would go on to make 'Adam's Apple' together five years after this. One of the flashbacks in this actually features heavy similarities to that 2005 film, which was presumably inspired by the short story used here. All in all, a very good release from 2000; even if it does leave a little bit of a strange aftertaste for me personally. Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 09/28/23 Full Review Henrik S It is one of my favorit movies of all time, but I really believe you have to be a Dane to truly understand a lot of the dialog, and interactions, between the characters. It is a VERY danish movie. Rated 5 out of 5 stars 07/12/23 Full Review pieter m + for characters + for themes + for dunking on Danish petty bourgeoisie + for comedy + for imagery Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 03/31/23 Full Review Audience Member An unusual and sometimes uncomfortable black comedy that's very dark in places and a little too predictable in others. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 01/23/23 Full Review Audience Member I see this film listed under documentary, drama, action & adventure, comedy. But they missed it. This is nothing if not a psychological thriller, emphasis on psychological. Torkild (Soren Pilmark) is the papa bear. He's just turned 40 and is feeling the pull to settle down. Of course, his girlfriend leaving him only puts salt in the wound. His aggravation is palpitate when Stefan and his girlfriend go at it upstairs in the restaurant while the boys watch a movie below. But then maybe papa bear is not only jealous of one of his wards obtaining intimacy where he couldn't, but are his father instincts kicking in as well? So this psychological profile of a bunch of psychotics, takes on more intrigue when looked at in this manor. We see how important the father, or lack of father figure plays in the film. For instance, for Arne, Torkild's controlling demeanour is too reminiscent of his own father, but he finds release in the older Alfred taking Arne under his wing when they go hunting so that Arne can "work off" his frustration. After, the oft aggravated Arne is found almost serene and Zen like. Peter, on the other hand, is the stable psychotic, if you will. He just goes along with most of the insanity, neither blowing up or getting too low. These boys certainly have the makings of career criminals, but it's the coming together of all and their need to grow beyond mere corruption and crime, to take on greater meaning in their lives that actually pulls them together and the film as well. Nothing sensational here. A bit slow at times and disengaging, but enough going on to help one see it through to the end. Rated 3 out of 5 stars 02/03/23 Full Review Audience Member Four small-time Copenhagen criminals; Torkild (Søren Pilmark), Peter (Ulrich Thomsen), Arne (Mads Mikkelsen) and Stefan (Nikolaj Lie Kaas) met during their teens and they all share a tragic childhood with abuse and sad consequences. They are assigned by the crime kingpin Færingen (Peter Andersson) to break into a house and retrieve a briefcase for him, a briefcase that proves to contain 4 million. The leader of the four, Torkild see this as his way out of a criminal life and become a normal citizen. He takes the decision to flee to Barcelona with the money and his three companions. But, already on Jylland their car breakes down and they seek refuge in an abandoned house. Because of a gunshot wound Peter got during the break in, the four have to wait to proceed with their journey to Barcelona until he recovers. In order to not create too much attention from the locals, they pretend that they are renovating the house to open a restaurant. But, their past eventually catches up with them... This sort of black action comedy genre became popular in Denmark with "In China They Eat Dogs" that came out in 1999 based on a screenplay by Anders Thomas Jensen, whom also wrote and directed "Flickering Lights". We see a similar sort of set up with a lot of dark humour and quite violent sequences in "Flickering Lights". The story is based on the main characters tragic upbringing and what they became and how certain events in the movie change their view on life and what sort of life they want to live future wise. Meaning the moral here is that despite a tough life and a criminal background there´s always a way out for a better life that won´t make you end up dead. And with the combination of friendship, love, happiness and identity the story becomes rich and endearing. Certain scenes are really over the top and absurd (and at times you simply can´t help but burst out in loud laughter), but due to the fact that Jensen has a great cast at his hands with Pilmark, Thomsen, Mikkelsen and Kaas (all magnificent in their roles) they manage to balance it perfectly and never drops the ball. The dialogue is witty and funny as well within all the complexity. I reckon you can see a touch of Tarantino in this as well, which I think Jensen would be happy to hear. You might even call it an homage to Tarantino. It still holds up pretty well 14 years later. And once you´ve seen "Flickering Lights" you will never forget Mikkelsen´s gun toting psychopath Arne... Rated 3.5 out of 5 stars 02/21/23 Full Review Read all reviews Post a rating

      Cast & Crew

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      Movie Info

      Synopsis Four gangsters steal a fortune from their boss and hide out in a small farmhouse, where each comes to the realization they would like to stay there and open a small restaurant.
      Director
      Anders Thomas Jensen
      Producer
      Kim Magnusson, Tivi Magnusson
      Screenwriter
      Anders Thomas Jensen
      Production Co
      M&M Productions
      Genre
      Action, Comedy, Crime, Drama
      Original Language
      Danish
      Release Date (Streaming)
      Jul 24, 2016
      Runtime
      1h 49m
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