Scarlett Worthington’s review published on Letterboxd:
“What a life
What a night
What a beautiful beautiful ride”
One of the rare films that from the very first few minutes right up to the final scene, I just knew I was witnessing something truly truly amazing. It’s an instant favourite. There’s nothing like this film not just in what it captures and how it captures it. It captures life, life in its brightest and darkest forms. It makes you want to live.
I feel like I should give context to how and where I saw this film because I really think it added to the experience. Me and a group of people booked to see “Screen Unseen” at the cinema, all we knew was that we were going to get to see a new released film, but we didn’t know which one. We assumed it was going to be something pretty shit. Now I admit I was a few minutes late because the football was on and because of the brilliant result (COME ON ENGLAND) I was on quite a high already, so when I stumbled into the cinema and saw that it was Another Round, the number one film I’ve wanted to see all year, my heart burst with joy and it basically did for the entire duration of the film.
So part of why I love movies and really why I think their appeal is so strong is the escapism aspect. Escapism is a vital part of life in my opinion, a lot of the most enjoyable things in life revolve around it. Yes, the appeal is so you can forget the worries and formalities of your life just for a short while but usually after engaging in some form of escapism we are reminded as to why we do what we do and what it is to be alive. All of my favourite things revolve around this concept and this film does that as well as being a pure personification of that very concept. It’s what every film does but man does Another Round just do it in just such a strikingly brilliant way.
So this film follows 4 high school teachers, who having got too caught up in the routine of their mundane lives launch a social experiment of upholding a constant low level of intoxication. We get all the highs and lows we expect from something like this. The highs are so joyous and intoxicating. We see a group of friends happy and really really living, it reminds you of those nights you’ll never forget where you’ve been off your face with people you love. The energy is on a completely different level, it’s infectious to a point of euphoric catharsis. Of course when we’re dealing with alcohol, this joy doesn’t last for long. A harmless cycle soon becomes dangerous and effects you and the people around you negatively to a point where that high just isn’t worth it anymore. When this film tonally took a turn it really turned and struck you like the sharpest knife to the gut. The change was masterful, constructed seamlessly by Vinterberg who really knows what he wants to say and communicates it perfectly. When everything seems to have gone south however, things get better, that joy we saw glimmers of suddenly turned into a blazing flame shown all through one final sequence where this profound sense of joy was shown through no words said. It was displayed in that iconic final scene with “What a Life” orchestrating Mads Mikkelsen dancing and people just celebrating and being happy. That was the most joyfully cathartic scene I have ever watched, all the emotions youve experienced are expressed in this one scene, I really cannot explain to you what I felt when it played. I’m aghast as to how happy this film made me it is so powerful in how it communicates the joy of life and for that it is definitely a modern masterpiece.
Vinterberg managed to show you how amazing life can be and how alcohol consumption has a lot to do with that but whilst also showing that we don’t need booze to be the best version of ourselves and to enjoy the company we keep. He expresses the importance of relationships and friendships and the importance of other people in our own lives. But of course most importantly he reminds us of what it is to be alive, and that is something I can’t write down in my review because it is a feeling and I don’t want to rob you of that.
When I laughed I really laughed, when I smiled I really smiled and when I cried I really cried. This film made me feel everything so strongly, I came out of the cinema wanting to run into the sea or just scream or something, it made me so happy and it made me realise just how happy I am with myself and about my life right now and that was just so beautiful to experience. It resonated on that deep a level I’m still in a state of awe and euphoria to be honest.