Donate Now to Support KDHX

Listen Live
Tuesday, 09 July 2013 23:00

'A Hijacking' captures the viewer as well

'A Hijacking' captures the viewer as well nordiskfilm.com
Written by Diane Carson
Rate this item
(0 votes)

About this Media...

Approaching its crisis from a reportorial perspective, the Danish film "A Hijacking" immediately establishes its two contrasting, central characters isolated in their strikingly different environments. In the opening scenes, Peter, CEO of an international shipping company, unemotionally and firmly negotiates a business deal with a Japanese team while Mikkel, cook on the cargo ship Rozen, jokes with his co-workers.

He misses his wife and daughter while enjoying his job. After Somali pirates hijack the Rozen, a tense standoff ensues, the crew's lives in the balance as circumstances deteriorate rapidly. Cross-cutting throughout the film from CEO Peter's sterile, bureaucratic offices to the ship's grubby cabins, psychological warfare takes center stage. This includes a hard-nosed, experienced negotiator brought in to guide Peter through the complicated crew-pirate mind games and the company's resistance to what they perceive as exorbitant financial demands.

 

The perfectly tailored, nonverbally restrained Peter, chillingly presented by Soren Malling, dramatically differs from the unkempt, effusive Mikkel living in increasingly squalid conditions after the pirates board. As Mikkel, Pilou Asbaek has the greatest character arc and telegraphs it perfectly through a myriad of verbal and nonverbal changes. The pirates' go-between Omar knows the give-and-take of the theatrical negotiations better than Peter, and neither Omar nor Peter dare to blink lest they show weakness to the other. As Omar, Abdihakin Asgar conveys a daunting persona: wily, observant and savvy with psychological toughness.

 

Very little context beyond the office and ship intrudes. The pirates remain largely undifferentiated, and only two of the crew gain any complexity: the captain and Mikkel through a couple scenes with, and phone calls to, the families What dominates director Tobias Lindholm's work is the claustrophobic, imprisonment within the ship as well as in the bureaucratic offices. No back-story emerges regarding the motivation of the pirates, for example, their fishing trade destroyed by other countries' overfishing traditional Somali areas.

 

The minimalist soundtrack, devoid of background music, pairs with the quiet, efficient camerawork to heighten the tension. We're in both locations, feeling the pressure and the impossible predicament. I'll never hear news of a hijacking again without thinking of this film.
"A Hijacking" is in Danish with English subtitles. At a Landmark Theatre.

 

Sponsor Message

Become a Sponsor

Find KDHX Online

KDHX on Instagram
KDHX on YouTube
KDHX on SoundCloud
KDHX on Facebook
KDHX on Twitter
KDHX on flickr

KDHX Recommends

February
Sunday
01

Discovery Series

The Discovery Series, a 10-event series spanning February to June, 2015, will not only bring you new music, but also music-focused interactive sessions that take a look at how music plays a role in our society. Each month the...


February
Monday
02

Fringe Third Annual Quick Draw - Artist networking and lottery drawing

This event marks the final step of the selection process for shows in the 2015 St. Lou Fringe Festival … but more importantly, it is a one-of-a-kind inside look at the city’s bravest, most creative performing passion...


February
Friday
06

Leo Kottke

KDHX welcomes Leo Kottke to The Sheldon on Friday, February 6th at 8 PM. Folk guitarist Leo Kottke is known for his innovative 12-string technique, and intimate performance style.


Get Answers!

If you have questions or need to contact KDHX, visit our answers portal at answers.kdhx.org.

Online Users

7 users and 10375 guests online
Sign in with Facebook

SYSTEM: S5 Box

Login/My Account

Sign in with Facebook