Cinema Art Series brings award-winning Danish film ‘Brothers’ to campus

by Caitlin Tortorici

The 2006 Cinema Art Series, which commenced in mid-September with the nationally-renowned Chinese film “2046” (Sept. 15 and 17) and “The Beat My Heart Skipped” (Sept. 22 and 24). It continued Sept. 29 and Oct. 1 with “Brothers,” the award-winning Danish film written and directed by Suzanne Bier.

Principle cast members of “Brothers” include Ulrich Thomsen, Connie Nielson and Nikolaj Lie Kaas. The plot of “Brothers” somewhat resembles that of “Pearl Harbor.” Michael (Thomsen) has a successful military career, a beautiful wife (Neilson) and two daughters. His younger brother Jannik has little direction and often clashes with the law.

After being sent to Afghanistan on a U.N. mission, Michael goes missing in action before he is presumed dead. In the meantime, Jannik proves himself capable of taking responsibility for his brother’s family, and inevitably develops a more-than-platonic relationship with Michael’s wife, Sarah. After suffering months of trauma in an Afghani prison, Michael returns home for a less-than-peachy reunion.

“Brothers” gained international recognition in 2004 and 2005 with eight awards. Among thse were the Sundance Film Festival’s Audience Award for World Cinema and the Indianapolis Film Festival’s Special Jury Prize. It received a total of 20 nominations.

Director Suzanne Bier’s other award-winning features include “Freud Leaving Home” (1990), “Family Matters” (1993), “Like it Never Was Before” (1995), “Credo” (1997), and “The One and Only” (1999). “The One and Only” won a host of Danish Film Academy and Danish Film Critics’ awards.

The Cinema Art Series, organized by Associate Professor of Rhetoric and Film Studies Robert Sickles, features half a dozen films from around the world. All showings are held at 7:30 p.m. in Hunter Conservatory.

The next featured film, “Crimson Gold,” will be shown on Oct. 13 and 15. Directed by Iranian director Jafar Panahi, “Crimson Gold” was forbidden by the Islamic government of Iran. It received international recognition at the Cannes, Chicago, Tbilisi and Valladolid film festivals in 2003 and 2004.

Other upcoming films include the German “The Edukators” (Nov. 3 and 5), and “The Agronomist”   (Nov. 10 and 12).