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A Horrible Woman (2017)

En frygtelig kvinde (original title)
When Rasmus meets Marie, he is certain that she is the love of his life. However, it doesn't take long before it turns out she is a possessive and manipulative being, that cunningly dissects Rasmus to pieces.

Director:

Christian Tafdrup
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Anders Juul ... Rasmus
Amanda Collin ... Marie
Rasmus Hammerich ... Troels
Sidse Mickelborg Sidse Mickelborg ... Pernille (as Carla Mickelborg)
Søren Hauch-Fausbøll Søren Hauch-Fausbøll ... Svend
Vibeke Hastrup ... Ingelis
Nicolai Jandorf Klok Nicolai Jandorf Klok ... Lars (as Nicolai Jandorf)
Danny Thykær ... Jeppe
Nicklas Søderberg Lundstrøm ... Jonathan
Fanny Louise Bernth Fanny Louise Bernth ... Maja
Heidi Keller Heidi Keller ... Silja
Christian Tafdrup ... James
Daniel van der Noon Daniel van der Noon ... Daniel
Frederik Carlsen ... Friend
Andreas Kabel Andreas Kabel ... Friend
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Storyline

When Rasmus meets Marie, he is certain that she is the love of his life. However, it doesn't take long before it turns out she is a possessive and manipulative being, that cunningly dissects Rasmus to pieces.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Drama

Certificate:

See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Nordisk Film

Country:

Denmark

Language:

Danish

Release Date:

25 December 2017 (Denmark) See more »

Also Known As:

A Horrible Woman See more »

Filming Locations:

Valby, Copenhagen, Denmark See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

DKK 3,900,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Dolby SR

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Christian Tafdrup was interviewed over 200 times, after the movie's release. See more »

Soundtracks

En Som Dig
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User Reviews

 
a portrait of perfect gender compljmentarity
16 July 2018 | by CineMuseFilmsSee all my reviews

A question many viewers may have on leaving A Horrible Woman (2017)is whether the film's title is meant to be ironic or judgemental. Today's gender politics make such questions inescapably loaded but this film can also be read as a portrait of perfect complementarity between the sexes.

A simple plotline keeps the focus on its two principal characters. Likeable bachelor Rasmus (Anders Juul) envies his friends' long-term relationships yet values his freedom until he meets the beautiful, vivacious, and interested Marie (Amanda Collin). They are well matched: she is forward and assertive, he is quiet and compliant. Each time she advances into his emotional space, he yields ground. She moves into his apartment and changes everything, while he squirms but is powerless to act.

We observe the story through two frames: one is through the eyes of friends who envy Rasmus his good fortune; the other is through his own diminishing sense of self. The more she deploys femininity to manipulate him the more he meekly acquiesces. In two different scenes, asMarie reaches new thresholds of control, she makes eye contact with us, the viewer, in a "look at what I can do" moment. Chillingly, this conscious duplicity may also be a signal of mental illness and it leaves no doubt that Marie is conscious of her power. Rather than sympathise with her victim, his weakness tempts us to think he deserves what she dishes out. The story takes a few twists and turns through his attempts to stand up to her, but his efforts are not enough to alter the narrative arc of his emasculation.

What are we to make of this unusual film? The director has been attacked as a misogynist, but the recognisability of Rasmus and Marie and their complementary characteristics makes this a broader study of relationships, rather than just another gender battle. They could have swapped gender and the story would play out with as much veracity, but perhaps less entertainment. If this is a valid litmus test, then the film rises above gender discourse.

The performances of the two stars are exemplary. Amanda Collins excels across her repertoire of feminine wiles while Anders Juul is her perfect guileless pawn. The filming style is claustrophobic Nordic domestic drama, with enough black humour to lighten its load. This entertaining study of gender roles makes you wonder how the planet has survived so long.


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