(aka "Open Hearts" )


directed by Susanne Bier
Denmark 2002


Cementing her position as not only one of the best Danish directors, with the international success of “Italian for beginners”, Susanne Bier followed up on her success with “Open Heart”, the most celebrated Danish film since “The Celebration”.

At the centre of the films stands an examination of not only love, but especially the phrase “love you forever”, which also is the literary translation of the Danish title. Cęcillie and Joachim are a couple very much in love and about to be married, when an accident occurs causing Joachim to be paralysed from the neck down. Full of self-hatred, he rejects Cęcillie and insults anyone who comes near him. By coincidence, the women who caused the accident is married to the doctor operating Joachim. This is how Niels and Cęcillie meets. First Niels offers to comfort her, but eventually they fall in love and he leaves his wife and children.

While “Open Hearts” share motif with the contemporary trend in Danish film of our inability to deal with death and sickness, Bier unsentimental depicts the breakdown of even something as solid as the family structure, as Niels chooses to leave his wife and children in favour of (temporary) happiness, thus suggesting that “love” only is a fleeting emotion and the words “love you forever” are empty.

Susanne Bier was awarded the International Critics' Award at TIFF, "For the fact that it proves that dogma has come of age and matured into a potent cinematic language that skillfully captures the freeing of real emotions that extreme trauma creates within the lives of the characters in her film."

Henrik Sylow


Theatrical Release: August 23, 2002 (Norwegian International Film Festival)

Reviews    More Reviews  DVD Reviews

DVD Review: Nordisk Film - Region 2 - PAL

Big thanks to Henrik Sylow for the Review!

DVD Box Cover

CLICK to order from:





Nordisk Film

Region 2 - PAL

Runtime 1:48:47

1.33:1 Original Aspect Ratio
Average Bitrate: 6.32 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.


Audio 2.0 Dolby Digital Danish
Subtitles Danish, Swedish, English, None
Features Release Information:
Studio: Nordisk Film

Aspect Ratio:
Fullscreen - 1.33:1

Edition Details:
• Audio Commetary by Susanne Bier, Nikolaj Lie Kaas, Sonja Richter, Paprika Steen, Mads Mikkelsen and Vibeke Windelųv
• Featurette (9:03)
• San Sebastican Press Conference (26:56)
• 4 deleted scenes with optional audio commentary (12:14)
• Zulu awards (3:54)
• Music from the Soundtrack
• Poster design
• Photo gallery
• Trailers
• Biographies

DVD Release Date: February 27, 2003
Keep case

Chapters 17

Comments This is easy the best produced Danish Dogme DVD to date and one of the best produced Danish DVDs. Not only is the DVD full of great additional material, but its all supported by English subtitles for an international audience.

First there is a very involved audio commentary where the director and actors discuss the film, the acting, the story and so forth in detail – with English subtitles. Then there is a short featurette dealing with the international success of the film. Then a 26 minute long press conference from the San Sebastian Film Festival. Then three deleted scenes and an demonstration of the thermocam, all with optional audio commentary by Susanne Bier. All this has English subtitles aswell.

 - Henrik Sylow


DVD Menus



Screen Captures

Subtitle sample






















DONATIONS Keep DVDBeaver alive and advertisement free:

Mail cheques, money orders, cash to:    or CLICK PayPal logo to donate!

Gary Tooze

Many Thanks...