On August 31, a young man named Anders (Anders Danielsen Lie) leaves a woman’s bed. He stops by a lake, fills his pockets with rocks, grabs a boulder and, stepping into the water, attempts a Virginia Woolf-like exit from this world. Instead he splutters to the surface and is forced to proceed with the day as planned. It’s revealed that Anders is a drug addict, about to be sprung from rehab after a lengthy stay, and his doctors are preparing him for a new life. They send him to Oslo to interview for an entry-level job at a magazine and Anders spends the day in the city, stopping to visit his best friend, his family home and he hopes, his sister. Wherever he goes he’s greeted with either cautious optimism or doubt. At a party he’s drawn to a young woman and she to him; will she be the silver lining in his playbook? Without passing judgment, the extraordinarily eloquent Oslo enables us to understand the decision Anders faces: to get on with life, or with death. Suspenseful and powerfully illuminating, director Joachim Trier’s film is a quiet marvel.
10 Best Movies We Missed This Year
We admit it: we couldn't review every film this year. Here are the ten we wish we had