Rams director Grímur Hákonarson's film about a farmer that defies Iceland's co-op system feels cynical and uncertain
THE COUNTY CWC D: Grímur Hákonarson. Iceland/Denmark/Germany/France. 92 min. Sep 6, 9:15 pm, Scotiabank 3 Sep 7, 4 pm, Scotiabank 11 Sep 15, 9:30 am, Scotiabank 3. Rating: NN
After a devastating loss, Icelandic dairy farmer Inga (Arndís Hrönn Egilsdóttir) launches a controversial protest against the co-op that dominates her small town’s economy in writer/director Hákonarson’s follow-up to his spiky sibling drama Rams. But The County is far less sure-footed in its approach.
Inga’s social-media crusade against the co-op’s predatory practices leads to petty reprisals from its director Eyjólfur, played by Rams’ Sigurður Sigurjónsson as the most beige tyrant imaginable. (There’s an early suggestion that Inga’s stand might be driven by misdirected grief, and that her ostensible nemesis is just an unsympathetic wonk.)
But as the stakes escalate, Hákonarson seems to lose interest, settling for a cynical resolution that feels more like a shrug than an actual ending.