Force Majeure

FORCE MAJEURE written and directed by Ruben Ostlund, with Johannes Kuhnke, Lisa Loven Kongsli, Clara Wettergren and Vincent Wettergren. A.


FORCE MAJEURE written and directed by Ruben Ostlund, with Johannes Kuhnke, Lisa Loven Kongsli, Clara Wettergren and Vincent Wettergren. A filmswelike release. 118 minutes. Some subtitles. Opens Friday (October 31). For venues and times, see Movies. Rating: NNNN

Ruben Ostlund’s devilishly clever festival hit is a bone-dry dissection of bourgeois happiness: you may have a great job and a loving family, but it can all be lost in a moment’s foolishness.

Force Majeure follows a picture-perfect Swedish family – Tomas (Johannes Kuhnke), Ebba (Lisa Loven Kongsli) and young children Vera and Harry (real-life siblings Clara and Vincent Wettergren) -on a skiing vacation in the French Alps.

Everything’s delightful until Tomas panics in a moment of potential crisis, destroying his standing as benevolent patriarch and sending him into a spiral of self-justification. The deeper he digs, the funnier Force Majeure gets and the more perceptive and uncomfortable it becomes. It goes on a little longer than it needs to, but that’s really my only complaint.

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