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Thelma Blu-Ray Review

Sometimes The Most Terrifying Discovery, Is Who You Really Are

28th January 2018

Norway, land of fjords, mountains, midnight sun, gravlaks and heavy metal, and some very talented film makers, non-more so than Joachim Trier.

Thelma is a surprise omission in the best foreign language film of the year at this years Oscars. Particularly surprising when you see some of the other movies nominated in other categories (the Boss Baby?).

Thelma, Eili Harboe (The Wave, Doktor Proktors tidsbadekar), is a young, religious woman who is entering her first year at university.

She’s close to her parents, her father in particular with whom she shares everything, and initially struggles to make friends.

When one day in the library she suffers, what appears to be, an epileptic fit, seemingly coinciding with some birds flying into the windows, she inadvertently makes a new friend in the form of Anja, Kaya Wilkins (Okay Kaya: Durer (Short)).

Whilst the two hit it off, it’s clear that Thelma has more than friendship feelings towards her new friend, but her religious upbringing forces her to suppress her feelings.

This, in turn, sees her having more of these fits and more strange occurrences happening at the same time. As Thelma has more tests and uncovers more of her past, she begins to understand that these psychokinetic powers she appears to have, are having impacts the likes of which she couldn’t have believed.

Director and co-writer Joachim Trier (Louder Than Bombs, Reprise) and co-writer Eskil Vogt (Louder Than Bombs, Reprise) have created something truly wonderful in Thelma.

What Trier has created is a modern-day Carrie. It’s an obvious comparison, and not one I make lightly, but Thelma is that good.

Trier’s approach to directing regularly puts us above the subject, sometimes so high you aren’t sure who to focus on. It’s like an out of body experience and it suits the subject matter brilliantly.

Thelma is a stripped back, clean approach to film making. Trier leaves rooms virtually empty, sometimes public areas have very few people, if any. It’s as we think of Scandinavian design; clean and crisp.

Eili Harboe is wonderful as Thelma. She has an innocence about her, you can see the struggle she is going through to repress what must feel like a rampant urge and then her physical metamorphosis when she finally embraces it.

Henrik Rafaelsen (The Almost Man, Happy, Happy) plays Thelma’s father, a doctor who has his own way of dealing with Thelma’s abilities, turning to god in the first instance and medication when that fails.

Ellen Dorrit Petersen (Blind, Acquitted (TV)) is Thelma’s mother, wheelchair bound for large parts of the film, the reason isn’t pleasant.

The movie Trier has created in Thelma is nothing short of brilliant. It’s a slow, tension building piece packed full of wonderful visuals, scenes worthy of any director and a haunting score, it’s almost mesmerising which adds to the visceral feel.

What Trier has created is a modern-day Carrie. It’s an obvious comparison and not one I make lightly (talking the original Carrie here), but Thelma is that good.

The Blu-ray is a beautiful transfer, the haunting score sounding wonderful in 5.1 DTS-HD, and includes an interview with Trier and another with Harboe, some behind the scenes shots and the trailer. The film is in Norwegian with English subtitles and the extras are in English.

DETAILS

    

RELEASE DATE
3rd November 2017

DIRECTED BY
Joachim Trier

WRITTEN BY
Joachim Trier, Eskil Vogt

Running Time:
1h 56min

THE QUICK SELL
Norway, land of fjords, mountains, midnight sun, gravlaks and heavy metal, and some very talented film makers, non-more so than Joachim Trier.

CAST & CREW
Eili Harboe, Ellen Dorrit Petersen, Eskil Vogt, Henrik Rafaelsen, Joachim Trier, Kaya Wilkins

DETAILS

    

RELEASE DATE
3rd November 2017

DIRECTED BY
Joachim Trier

WRITTEN BY
Joachim Trier, Eskil Vogt

Running Time:
1h 56min

THE QUICK SELL
Norway, land of fjords, mountains, midnight sun, gravlaks and heavy metal, and some very talented film makers, non-more so than Joachim Trier.

CAST & CREW
Eili Harboe, Ellen Dorrit Petersen, Eskil Vogt, Henrik Rafaelsen, Joachim Trier, Kaya Wilkins

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