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Nineties: Young Cinema Rebels


A 60th birthday family reunion takes a dark and hilarious turn in Vinterberg’s Dogme 95 film.

Image from Festen

Denmark-Sweden 1998
Dir Thomas Vinterberg
With Ulrich Thomsen, Henning Moritzen, Thomas Bo Larsen, Paprika Steen
English subtitles
Certificate 15

When a family gathers to celebrate the patriarch’s 60th birthday the reunion turns both dark and hilarious, sometimes both at the same time. Festen was the first film of the Dogme 95 movement initiated by Vinterberg and Lars von Trier, a filmmaking manifesto that emphasised story, theme, acting and simple production values over special effects, elaborate lighting and technical tricks.

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