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3.8 out of 5 stars
3.8 out of 5 stars
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on 8 August 2015
There aren't any subtitles for the narration, which makes watching this film rather frustrating (even though it's kind of interesting just watching and letting the sound wash over you it gets old after a while).

If you can speak Icelandic, then feel free to ignore this review.
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I bought this movie on impulse a few years ago, after spending a cracking holiday in Iceland, and watch it at least once a year. It never fails to leave me with a big silly grin on my face!

Hilmir Snær Guðnason is superb as our anti-hero Hlynur who, at the age of 30, is still living with his single mum and making a career out of living off the social. As long as he gets enough krónur to keep him in beer, fags, porn videos and condoms, why on Earth would he want to find a job? A minor irritation enters this blissful existence, when a girl with whom he'd had a one-night stand announces she's pregnant with his child, but things get truly complicated when his mother's very good (and rather hot!) friend Lola comes to stay...

Well no more spoilers, but the story unfolds in a sumptuous blur of hedonism, tortuous relationships and laugh-out-loud hilarious black comedy.

Great soundtrack - much of which is variations on Ray Davies' classic 'Lola' and I even got to spot a few of the pubs I'd been to in Iceland's amazing capital! This is sure to boost the tourist trade.

Definitely not for the prudish (or indeed Tory voters who cannot possibly empathise with a work-shy scrounger!) but, if you're fairly broad-minded, you will love 101 (that's Reykjavik old town's post-code, in case you were wondering) Reykjavik!
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on 17 August 2006
On one level this film has a somewhat "run of the mill" story line. It can be viewed as the story of a twenty-something male unable to grow up or form relationships. The kind of story we've all seen many times before. However, the beauty of the film lies in its eccentric characters and setting and the black comedy moments that are provided throughout (such as the main character's unsuccesful attempt to kill himself on the top of a mountain).

The main character Hlynur is unemployed, has a bad on/off relationship and has no idea what to do with his life other than surf for internet porn and get drunk - indeed he says at one point that its as if he is dead. Into his life, one Christmas, comes his mother's Spanish flamenco teacher (who, it later transpires, is also his mother's lesbian lover). All hell proceeds to break loose. Somehow, despite the depression of some of the situations they engineer themseleves into, one can't help but like Hlynur, and all of the characters in the film.

The film is a bit let down by its ending, which is a bit too "happy ever after" (Noi Albinoi is a similar film from Iceland but a great deal more "edgier"). It redeems itself with its the soundtrack which is really original. All in all this is a pleasant evening's viewing, and something different - I didn't really find it as depressing as some of the other reviewers seem to have found it.
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Scandinavian countries do some great offbeat movies, quirky little indie films that entertain as well as give an insight as to how their inhabitants cope with (or not, as the case may go) with long freezing nights and quite often, not a lot to do.

101 Reykjavik is one such, from Iceland itself and Hilmir Snaer Gudnason plays Hlynur and his methods of coping include alcohol, nocturnal activities that involve 'research' in bars, tobacco, weed (when he can get it) sex (ditto) surfing for porn day and night - and er, living his mother, though he's 30.

Things Hilynur doesn't do - work, help his own cause in any way at all, nor wear a condom on the only two occasions that he's had a reason to. You can guess the outcome/s of these last two inactions.

Hilynur's divorced mother then suddenly decides that she's attracted to Lola, a Spanish flamenco dancer, who happened also to be the target for Hilynur's second sexual encounter - without the condom, if you recall.

This three-way habitation in a small flat has its implications and minor mishaps, after Lola moves in.

It's all quite squalid in an oddly appealing way and nobody is that nasty and no-one beats anyone up. It's certificate 18, mainly for strong nudity and sex but these scenes aren't that erotic, always being rather quirky, embarrassing or occurring in dingy corners.

There's some nice little narrative twists that give it a pleasing roundness, without being too neat and is a good, satisfying film. Quite memorable, too, as I saw it at least five years ago on TV and buying the DVD now was like reacquainting with an old, rather distant friend.

Ex Blur frontsman Damon Albarn had a part to do with this movie - co-composing (played?) the film's music and (apparently) owns a bar in Reykjavik with the director, Baltasar Kormakur. This is this director's first movie and so far, is difficult to make comparisons, but the nearest I can get is possibly a Scandinavian Pedro Almadovar.
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on 17 December 2001
101 Reykjavík is set against the backdrop of Iceland's swinging nightlife based on Hallgrimur Helgason's novel with the same title.
Besides, it features a wonderful musical score by Damon Albarn and Einar Orn Benedíktsson.
The weakest point is not in the film itself, but in the fact you can't choose different languages or subtitles. (The main soundtrack is in icelandic and the subtitles only are in english). Sometimes it gets hard to understand Victoria Abril's english, even for me (I'm from Spain).
Anyway, it's worth it. Enjoy this fantastic film.
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on 4 July 2010
101 Reykjavik revolves around the life of 'Hlynur' a 30 year old unemployed slacker, who although a grown man still lives with his mother, spends his time drinking, smoking, surfing the net for porn and sleeping with all the women he can get his hands on. Everything in Hlynur's life is just the way he wants it... uncomplicated; and when a friend of his mother, a Spanish flamenco instructor named Lola, comes to stay with them, Hlynur's cosy little world is shattered forever.
Although labelled as a comedy the humour is typically Icelandic, very dark, dry, and full of pathos. And while the film revolves around Hlynur's life, it's also a cynical look at Reykjavik's hedonistic and liberal society.
Overall, while '101 Reykjavik' isn't the best Icelandic film out there, it's still a great film with an entertaining witty story and a definitely worth a look if you're a fan of indie films.
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on 14 September 2007
This film is a pure and easy, gives a window into a young man's life and the trauma embedded with his life. A must watch and I highly recommend it, watched it before I went to Iceland on holdiday!
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on 11 September 2014
The subtitles don't work, so we gave up after the fifth attempt to view it!!!!!!! The work for a few minutes, then vanish!
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on 14 May 2006
Not one to give away the plot, all I can say is that this film is an absolute gem and I can't recommend it highly enough. Be prepared to fall in love with the 2 main characters as well as Iceland!! BUY IT!!
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on 19 April 2002
This video is really enjoyable. Both Lola and the nordic anti-hero are great. Fatalism as a joke and black humor all over the film. It is a pity that the book is not available in English. But the film makes justice to it.
0Comment| 6 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

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