The Hunt 2012

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Lukas is a recently-divorced primary school teacher locked in an acrimonious custody battle over his teenage son Marcus.

Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen
1 hour 50 minutes

The Hunt

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Product Details

Genres Drama, Thriller, International
Director Thomas Vinterberg
Starring Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen
Supporting actors Annika Wedderkopp, Lasse Fogelstrom, Susse Wold, Anne Louise Hassing, Lars Ranthe, Alexandra Rapaport
Studio Content Film
BBFC rating Suitable for 15 years and over

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4.5 out of 5 stars
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60 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Antenna TOP 500 REVIEWER on 13 Dec 2012
Format: DVD
In yet another subtle and well-acted Danish film, we see how Lucas, the only male assistant to provide a bit of rough and tumble in a nursery school, finds himself sacked, charged by the police and a pariah in his tight-knit community when a normally truthful child appears to confide to the head teacher that Lucas has sexually abused her. From the outset we are given clues as to other events in the child's life which might be affecting her actions, but which cannot be known to those investigating the issue. Through a series of all too believably blundering attempts to "do the right thing", Lucas is condemned from the outset, wild rumours multiply as people are carried away by "groupthink" to turn against him.

The film skilfully points the finger at others who might be letting Lucas carry the blame for their own misdeeds, and even arouses our own occasional doubts as to his innocence. However, for the most past we feel outrage on his behalf, and a helpless sense of his compounded fate. All the main characters display some depth and changes in their emotions - in the case of Lucas, his natural gentleness and passivity giving way to bursts of retaliation.

The drama is set against a background of the deer hunts which bind the men together in a macho culture which may of course brutally cast out someone who seems to have broken a taboo, and the availability of guns adds a continual underlying threat of violence or tragedy. The film has the entertaining knack of following what seems like a happy event with a sudden twist back into suffering for the unfortunate Lucas.

Although the prejudice and hysteria in the community may seem a little exaggerated, the ending does not baldly "spell everything out" but leaves areas of ambiguity to provide food for thought.
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25 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Tee Double You Bee Esq on 14 Jan 2013
Format: DVD
The path taken by the outstanding Mads Mikkelsen's character Lukas is Job-like in his apparent fall from grace. From a warm, familial opening with the menfolk of the community skinny-dipping in an icy lake to a fractured, mistrusted outcast, the journey is intense and thoroughly moving. The naturalistic acting and script is superlative and the performance from the 5 year old playing Klara is exceptional.

From a 'few foolish words' from the Klara, Lukas' world is torn apart as he is wrongly-accused of child abuse. Every performance in this film crackles with energy yet is finely nuanced. The direction is superb; all autumnal hues and a tense 'what-will-happen-next?' constantly bubbling beneath the surface. Most importantly, you really care about the characters, one way or the other.

The Hunt could be seen as a companion piece to Vinterberg's Dogme Manifesto film 'Festen' but in my opinion is even more successful in exposing the horrors of human nature, family bonds and a very modern media-fueled hysteria. In simplistic terms, the moral is 'mud sticks' yet the complexities on display here are intelligent and deeply heart-felt.

Without a doubt one of the best films of 2012.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By J. Hawkins on 28 Mar 2013
Format: Blu-ray Verified Purchase
`The Hunt' is a truly accomplished film, its simple premise and themes are executed perfectly. The film is hugely engrossing and completely and utterly infuriating, which is a testament to the merits of its acting, direction, script and hyper-realism.

The film follows Lucas (Mads Mikkelsen), a lonely primary school teacher who relishes his job and is popular with both the children and the local community. Just as he meets Nadja (Alexandra Rapaport) and begins a relationship with her, his relationship with another woman, 5-year-old Klara (Annika Wedderkopp), lands him in immeasurable trouble. What happens is a completely innocuous misunderstanding, but the community, the `adults' who are supposed to be rational and fair, turn into a lynch mob.

The film is about the danger of mass-hysteria, ignorance and subsequently the frightening power of numbers. It teaches the importance of measure and consideration; it's a much needed anecdote to the sensational vilification, general ignorance and trashy media that permeates our lives.

It's the scare-mongering, amoral tabloids that partly brainwash and empower the dangerously ignorant lynch-mobs that arise whenever someone screams `paedophile!' or `woman beater!' These lynch-mobs normally consist of pugnacious, dreadful people who enjoy drama and violence rather than actually care about their cause.

The film is intelligently and thoughtfully written. The girl is by no means vindictive; as much as you want to vent your anger, she's clearly far too young to understand what is happening. It's the `adults' who display their stupidity, their total lack of reasoning and fairness left me indignant for the entirety of the running time and subsequently the whole evening - the film really works.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Corey S. Newcombe on 8 Dec 2013
Format: Blu-ray
There is a moment in this masterpiece when you know that that is the part that is going to spiral someone's life out of control. And in this movie, it's the split second scene where Klaras brother shows her an indecent picture on the IPad.

It's not served to you on a plate, but its little subtle things like this, that make this movie the harrowing piece it is.

Mikkelsen is wonderful as Lucas, a lonely teacher who is just trying to get his life back on track. His son is about to move in with him, and he has met a potential partner, but when Klara, his best friends daughter makes him a gift, and he refuses it because he feels its inappropriate, she tells the teacher a lie, that will shake the whole community.

As the viewer, you feel so much empathy for Lucas, because you know that his career is over, and that his life will never be the same, but at the same time, you feel anger toward the rest of the community, because they banish him, without letting him speak.

Its a taboo subject, because any sane person would take the youngsters side, but it's the fact that when she says to her mother she made it up, the mother just brushes it off, and it gets worse and worse for Lucas.

It really is a hard hitting film, the cast are wonderful, and having it set around Christ,as, gives the mood an even more lonely feel for Lucas.

It's not for all tastes, it will leave you exhausted, especially the final scene, which leaves you knowing that Lucas will always be guilty to some, even though it's been proved otherwise.

Essential viewing.
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