13 September 2002 | Ed-90
a warm, sad, odd film
In many ways this was quite a good film. Set in Iceland and Denmark, it shows the difficult lives of men and women in the fishing business, but also (as Laxness loved to write about) the dissolute lifestyle of the wealthy. Laxness won the Nobel Prize for Lit in 1955, yet he was hounded out of the US in the late 1920's, appalled by what he saw in New York City/America as the gap between the "haves" and "have-nots." In this film, Laxness portrays the shallowness of the haves' lives; worried more for appearances and images than human love and dignity. It makes me want to read more of Laxness's works. I recommend it, especially for people who like the "Hannah and her sisters" strong-women-surviving-against-impossible-odds theme. And/or those who can abide the portrayal of men as drunks, philanderers, lechers, buffoons, religious hypocrites, idiots, bribers, etc., all of whom are in this film. This latter extreme portrayal pattern was obvious, and thus a real drawback of the film.