(aka "Adams Apples" )

 

directed by Anders Thomas Jensen
Denmark 2005

 

Adam (Ulrich Thomsen) is your everyday neo-Nazi, who hates everyone. After time in jail, he has to spend time redeeming himself and thus is send to a provisional church to help the community. Here he meets Ivan (Mads Mikkelsen), the local priest, who wont accept there is evil in the world and chooses to see everything from a perspective of good. And as Adam has no intentions of doing anything, when asked what he wants to do to show his productivity, he says he wants to bake an apple cake. How hard can it be?

The third feature by Anders Thomas Jensen, “Adam's Apples” is his best work to date as a director. It still lacks the seriousness of his other work for directors like Susanne Bier, but it is much tighter in dramatic structure and seems to have an idea. When I spoke with Jensen's earlier this year about exactly that, he confessed, that when he writes for himself, he finds himself writing things which makes him laugh and stay up late at night. Instead of solid comedy, he writes boyish pranks into satire. Jensen continued, that it was a phase he had to go thru and that “Adam's Apples” is the last of that phase, as he now feels more ready to move on to make, what he likes to call real films.

As such, "Adam's Apples" is not a real film, but nothing more than a bunch of friends having fun. Jensen writes his own films directly for his friends. In this case, he got the idea of seeing Mads Mikkelsen, who normally plays tough guys, as a nerdy nothing but good priest. So while his stories may lack a certain something, his characters are the best written in Danish film, because he knows these actors intimately, being close friends, and he writes each part exactly to their personality.

The lack of a serious approach to dramatic structure and content, has by all three films (“Flashing Lights”, “The Green Butchers”, “Adam's Apples”) been the main critic. On one side, Jensen can write very serious drama, (“Brothers”, “Wilbur Wants to Kill Himself”, “Open Hearts”), and then he makes halfassed attempts at making comedies himself. But one has to consider both how Anders Thomas Jensen works as a writer and his needs to develop as a writer, and put that next to an almost unlimited freedom he has due to his successes. He does not abuse that he can do whatever he wants, he takes advantage of it to further himself by getting something of his chest.

While the two previous films were lacking, “Adam's Apples” is not. It is an almost purely symbolic allegory on the fight between good and evil, where the characters become almost abstractions. Ivan is too good to be true, having a brain ulcer, which causes him to see and hear no evil, and seeing it as God testing him. And thru him, Jensen asks, how far can a man, here Adam, go towards evil, before he becomes good?

Denmark’s candidate for the Oscar nominations for best foreign film, “Adam's Apples” is an at times almost surreal, wonderful and extremely quirky comedy about the fight between good and evil, about the meaning of life, and about the pleasures of a good apple cake, which while with its share of flaws, is full of heart and absurd silly situations only Anders Thomas Jensen could dream up.
 

Henrik Sylow

Poster

Theatrical Release: April 15, 2005

Reviews     DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Nordisk Film - Region 2 - PAL

Big thanks to Henrik Sylow for the Review!

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Distribution

Nordisk Film

Region 2 - PAL

Runtime 1:30:56 (4% PAL speedup)
Video

2.35:1 Original Aspect Ratio

16X9 enhanced
Average Bitrate: 7.22 mb/s
PAL 720x576 25.00 f/s

NOTE: The Vertical axis represents the bits transferred per second. The Horizontal is the time in minutes.

Bitrate

Audio 5.1 Dolby Digital Danish, DTS Danish
Subtitles English, Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, Finnish, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Nordisk Film

Aspect Ratio:
Widescreen anamorphic - 2.35:1

Edition Details:
• Behind the Scenes (25:45 / 4:3)
• 7 Deleted Scenes (15:05 / 4:3)
• Trailer (2:07 / 4:3)
• Adam's Applecake by Claus Meyer

DVD Release Date: October 17, 2005
Amarey

Chapters 13

 

 

Comments The transfer has kept the soft idyllic, darkish blue-ish and grainy image of the theatrical print. Good details, very solid dark black and no real visible artifacts. A flawless transfer.

The additional material is very disappointing. A fairly good, but very standard Making Of, 7 deleted scenes and the recipe of an apple cake. Both previous releases from Anders Thomas Jensen thru Nordisk has been 2-Disc editions with, while also lacking an audio commentary, at least interviews and more detailed production material. For a film, which Nordisk believes is the best Danish chance for an Oscar, this release is way below par from additional material side.

 - Henrik Sylow

 

 






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DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:

 

Distribution

Nordisk Film

Region 2 - PAL


 




 

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