Nói Albinói [DVD]
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Icelandic director Dagur Kori's portrait of Noi, a strikingly individual seventeen-year-old rebel drifting through life in a bleak, extremely remote town covered in a perpertual layer of snow and ice. Noi is expelled from school, reducing his social contact to flawed and ambivalent relationships with his widowed alcoholic father and a distant fondness for his slightly batty grandmother... until he meets Iris, a city girl who has come home after an unspecified incident to stay with her father in the town. Noi's dreams of escape, however, end up in farcical failure - until a natural disaster occurs that changes his world forever.
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Despite his above average intelligence Noi constantly skips school and spends his days wandering around town, rigging slot machines to pay out a jackpot, hanging out at the local book store where he plays board games with the owner and retreating to a hidden cellar in his grandmother's home where he dreams of visiting Hawaii.
When the book store owners' daughter named Iris arrives in town the two begin a tentative relationship. Noi is infatuated by the beautiful girl who has lived in the capital Reykjavik, and Iris sees Noi as rebellious, amusing and a way of passing time in a boring town. After Iris jokes of running away with Noi he takes her seriously and after a series of misjudged exploits his life rapidly changes for the worse.
The slow pace of the film along with frequent landscape shots help convey just how oppressive and bleak life is in the remote Icelandic town, but the thing that brings 'Noi Albinoi' to life are the great characters and a story that is infused with typical Icelandic dark subtle humour and pathos. If you like foreign films, this is an absolute must see.
The lesson learned in 101 Reykjavik [DVD]  is that life is good and bad and everything just IS. It is a brave sense of resignation that characterises Icelandic cinema and literature and so long as you can accept that everything just is, you'll likely approve of Noi Albinoi and find the film very funny. The deleted scenes are worth a look too. Funniest scene? Cooking with his dad (Þröstur Leó Gunnarsson , who was the lead in Tears Of Stone). Just thinking of that makes me want to give it a fifth star...
Before this disastrous event, he challenges authority and gets involved with petty crime. He meets an attractive girl named Iris, who is visiting her father from the south of Iceland. It seems she needs to get away from city life according to her father. She jokes about wanting to leave Iceland and explore the world. Noi takes her litterally, walking together one night, he breaks the glass door to the local museum where they nearly get caught by the guards. They find an interactive map which lets them see what different parts of the world are like ... After this date, he buys new clothes, steals a car, and goes to meet Iris, challenging her to make a break with him. She sees the absurdity of this action and can't believe he took her seriously ... His brother bails him out of jail ... Prior to this, he was expelled from school for playing hookey too often. Just when it seems Noi has reached the end of his rope, a turning point, disaster strikes, his world is shaken up and nearly destroyed. This is a haunting and existential film which explores the depths of one lonely teenager's life ... and makes him face the realities of life. The extra features on this DVD include deleted scenes which are quite extraordinairy and give the viewer a better perspective of how the director could have taken the film in a different direction. They are worth viewing ... Erika Borsos [pepper flower]
Most recent customer reviews
Simple, plain and quirky with great characters - I liked it.
"what are you doing on my roof?"