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The Hunt (English Subtitled) 2013

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(English Subtitled) The Hunt is a disturbing depiction of how a lie is taken as truth when gossip, doubt and malice are allowed to flourish and ignite a witch-hunt that soon threatens to destroy an innocent man's life. Lucas is just starting to get his life back together after losing his job and facing a difficult divorce, when his life is shattered by an untruthful remark, throwing his small ...

Starring:
Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen
Runtime:
1 hour, 55 minutes

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Format: DVD
[The following review refers to a 2012 Danish film "Jagten" starring Mads Mikkelsen. The director is Thomas Vinterberg ("The Celebration").]

Lucas is a 42-year-old, recently divorced kindergarten teacher living in an unnamed small Danish community. His lonely and quiet life turns into a nightmare when 6-year-old girl Klara, one of the children at the kindergarten and Lucas's best friend Theo's daughter, tells an innocent lie. Shunned by most of the community as a child molester, and even harassed to the point of being terrorized, Lucas is driven to the edge of despair.

"The Hunt" (in original Danish "Jagten") is a difficult film to sit through, but is a rewarding experience nonetheless. Self-deception and mass psychology have been taken up in films, but the result is rarely as chilling as the nerve-shattering story that is realistic and unpredictable.

What makes the film compelling is the superb performance of Mads Mikkelsen. Mikkelsen, known as Le Chiffre of "Casino Royale," is simply fascinating as Lucas, a warm-hearted man accused of what he did not do. Thomas Vinterberg ("The Celebration") directs the film with confidence, building up tension incredibly high as he keeps the story moving along. A must-see.
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Format: DVD
This movie is pretty amazing, I was expecting it to be really good but I had seen some other movies on IMBD given over 8 out of 10 (as in the case of that movie) and except for a few exceptions, I wasn't impressed with most of them, and lots of them I think are overrated. and it has been a while since I saw some excellent cinema like this. I was getting too used to Hollywood standard entertainment. This movie belongs to another league entirely and is easily one of the very best I have seen ever. Lots of European cinema is very different than American cinema. This movie has a very realistic story that could happen for real, and for that, it is disturbing, and right toward the ending when I thought that the 'ending' would be very improbable, my expectations have been violently thwarted and the true conclusion of the movie hits you like a slap on your face. Here's what I learned from it:

1. Nothing is black or white, there are shades of grey. It's easy to take things for granted and especially if other people do it. (find out about the Lucifer Effect by Zimbardo after you see the movie, but you don't need to know all that to enjoy the movie)

2. Often the best people pay as they are taken advantage of.

3. I have to find more movies as good as this.

A must see, great actors and really compelling film making and story. Wow.
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Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
I saw this movie three times during its all-too-short run in New York City art houses. This is a deeply-absorbing adult film that grips you from the start and never lets go. You are on the edge of your seat rooting for this man's life to somehow turn around. Mads Mikkelsen - best known to American audiences as "Hannibal" on the TV series - stars in this film. He has been a major star in Europe for years, and how lucky we are to finally have him in the USA. He plays a character, Lucas, who is wrongfully accused of sexually assaulting a small child, the daughter of his best friend. He is the victim of vicious lies that snowball out of control. Everyone can relate to what this character is going through because we have all at some time been the victim of rumors and lies. Except that what this character is going through is 1,000 times worse than most things I can think of. The supporting cast are all perfect in their roles. Although Mads Mikkelsen's role on "Hannibal" is striking, it gives us a limited view of his acting abilities. But there is nothing this actor cannot do. I know, because after seeing "The Hunt," I rented or bought about 8 of his films, and I would recommend that you do the same. I haven't been this impressed with an actor in about 10 years. No, make that 20. Hopefully the good word will get out and it will receive a wider release. Mads deserves an Oscar for this, and the film deserves "Best Foreign Film."
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Format: DVD
"The Hunt" (2012 release from Denmark; original title "Jagten"; 106 min.) brings the story of Lucas (played by Mads Mikkelsen), a forty-something, recently divorced man. He is aching over the loss of his marriage and the fact that his teenage son is living with his ex-wife. Lucas is helping out at the local kindergarten, where the kids adore him. We also get to know Klara, the 5 or 6 yr. old daughter of Lucas' best friend Theo. After having overheard a racy conversation by Klara's brother and his friends, Klara flaps out some words to the kindergarten's principal, implying improper behavior by Lucas. Things develop rapidly from there, and soon thereafter other kids at the kindergarten also come forward with similar allegations. At this point we are about 40 min. into the movie. To tell you more of the plot would do a big disservice to your viewing experience, you'll just have to see for yourself how it all plays out.

Couple of comments: first and foremost, this movie demonstrates how a young child unknowingly can cause destruction of a life and of a community. It is a very difficult issue, as of course we tend to believe what young kids tell us, since they have no reason to lie, right? Except that at such a young age, young kids may not yet fully comprehend the difference between telling the truth and telling lies, or at least certainly they cannot fully anticipate or comprehend the consequences of their actions. Second, the acting in this movie is outstanding throughout, none more so that Mad Mikkelsen as the accused sexual offender. Mikkelsen also excelled in last year's "A Royal Affair", another outstanding movie from Denmark. No surprise that he won the Best Actor award at the 2012 Cannes Film Festival (where this movie premiered).
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