Christina Reynolds’s review published on Letterboxd:
Another Round (Danish: Druk, "binge drinking") is a 2020 comedy-drama film directed by Thomas Vinterberg, from a screenplay by Vinterberg and Tobias Lindholm. An international co-production between Denmark, the Netherlands, and Sweden, the film stars Mads Mikkelsen, Thomas Bo Larsen, Magnus Millang, and Lars Ranthe.
Four high school teachers (Martin, Peter, Tommy, and Nikolaj) consume alcohol on a daily basis to see how it affects their social and professional lives.
With advancements in chemical analyses confirming the earliest known use of alcohol dating around 7,000 - 6600 BC and problematic use of this substance being formally documented around the 17th century it might be tempting to label it as such:
A modern problem, and a historical solution.
With this in mind - the premise of 𝑨𝒏𝒐𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓 𝑹𝒐𝒖𝒏𝒅 is not entirely based in fiction, but it has been corrected as a misunderstanding. Finn Skårderud (a renowned psychiatrist and psychotherapist) is introduced to audience members as believing humans are born with a blood alcohol deficit .05%, but this ignores the context of this comment and his own efforts to elaborate; the full quote is “ after one or two glasses, yes, life is pretty good, and we think maybe we're born with a .05% deficit” and prefaces the Norwegian translation of ‘The Psychological Effects of Wine’ by Italian author Edmondo de Amicis. Skårderud’s commentary was intended as a whimsical introduction to a novel that includes quotes like “ wines adds a smile to Friendship”, and is followed by what is more or less a rejection of this claim.
Regardless, the influence this quote is appropriately substantiated within the confines of 𝑨𝒏𝒐𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓 𝑹𝒐𝒖𝒏𝒅’s screenplay as a thought project, and it is only logical that the character most well-versed in psychology with an explicit interest in human behaviour could find this idea and passing and think: well, it's worth a shot (or, a couple).
𝑨𝒏𝒐𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓 𝑹𝒐𝒖𝒏𝒅 is light years away from moralizing as it explores the effect of alcoholic consumption while simultaneously asking (almost rhetorically) why the opportunities to indulge are so readily all-encompassing. There's something to be said about the manner in which it's characters trapeze the line between confidence and arrogance as they cope with an abundance of monotony that breeds vulnerability and to a further extent a fear of impermanence as it involves their own professional and social circles. Obviously (I guess hopefully obviously) sober on set, the chemistry between its actors is elevated by interactions that avoid being obnoxiously contrived albeit muddled with some expected belligerence and dynamics firmly rooted and threatened by the grips of insecurities and perpetual defeatism. 𝑨𝒏𝒐𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓 𝑹𝒐𝒖𝒏𝒅 further exploits tragedy to the length its primary conjecture allows, but the predictability seems substantiated by some level of self-awareness thagt a film depicting copious amounts of alcohol consumption requires - and given the complexity of individual experiences with alcohol ( amongst other mitigating factors) the lack of condemnation or idolization is amicably forgivable.
Long before production, Vinterberg was visited by a screenwriter from Hollywood who at one point asked his daughter - Ida - questions pertaining to how she generally would spend her free time; Ida described a game similar to the one depicted in 𝑨𝒏𝒐𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓 𝑹𝒐𝒖𝒏𝒅, and when this visitor started asking questions about Vinterberg’s duty to intervene as a father (which, he didn't feel he had “because he's Danish”) the brief reflection on Denmark's drinking culture and how it differs from more conservative areas of the world was enough to inspire Vinterberg’s earliest investment in this project overall.
In a poetically calamitous fashion, however, a personal loss would solidify Vinterberg’s vision. Having read the script with excitement and originally set to be cast as one of Martin's children, Ida passed away following a car accident four days in to filming for 𝑨𝒏𝒐𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓 𝑹𝒐𝒖𝒏𝒅 would commence, and this would influence some significant changes in the overall script; consequently, this would affect the overall tone of 𝑨𝒏𝒐𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓 𝑹𝒐𝒖𝒏𝒅 - reconstructed to be life-affirming as opposed to rambunctious or prolifically sanctimonious.
Propelled by nuances, what could be judged as an overindulgent or borderline sacrilegious fantasy meditates on the controllable and unmanageable Elements of Life: all that is intricate and uninvolving.
As it is increasingly inebriated by an optimism that is unassuming and buoyant, 𝑨𝒏𝒐𝒕𝒉𝒆𝒓 𝑹𝒐𝒖𝒏𝒅 is a gratuitous and profound appraisal of the true cost of self-preservation, but it is better warranted and received as a reminder that outside of the bar last calls remain inevitable: and this inescapability comes with the potential to be sobering.
“𝑻𝒉𝒂𝒕’𝒔 𝒕𝒉𝒆 𝒑𝒓𝒐𝒃𝒍𝒆𝒎 𝒘𝒊𝒕𝒉 𝒅𝒓𝒊𝒏𝒌𝒊𝒏𝒈, 𝑰 𝒕𝒉𝒐𝒖𝒈𝒉𝒕, 𝒂𝒔 𝑰 𝒑𝒐𝒖𝒓𝒆𝒅 𝒎𝒚𝒔𝒆𝒍𝒇 𝒂 𝒅𝒓𝒊𝒏𝒌. 𝑰𝒇 𝒔𝒐𝒎𝒆𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒃𝒂𝒅 𝒉𝒂𝒑𝒑𝒆𝒏𝒔 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒅𝒓𝒊𝒏𝒌 𝒊𝒏 𝒂𝒏 𝒂𝒕𝒕𝒆𝒎𝒑𝒕 𝒕𝒐 𝒇𝒐𝒓𝒈𝒆𝒕; 𝒊𝒇 𝒔𝒐𝒎𝒆𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒈𝒐𝒐𝒅 𝒉𝒂𝒑𝒑𝒆𝒏𝒔 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒅𝒓𝒊𝒏𝒌 𝒊𝒏 𝒐𝒓𝒅𝒆𝒓 𝒕𝒐 𝒄𝒆𝒍𝒆𝒃𝒓𝒂𝒕𝒆; 𝒂𝒏𝒅 𝒊𝒇 𝒏𝒐𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒉𝒂𝒑𝒑𝒆𝒏𝒔 𝒚𝒐𝒖 𝒅𝒓𝒊𝒏𝒌 𝒕𝒐 𝒎𝒂𝒌𝒆 𝒔𝒐𝒎𝒆𝒕𝒉𝒊𝒏𝒈 𝒉𝒂𝒑𝒑𝒆𝒏.”
P.S. (AKA: Innocuously shallow sidenote)
This is also my official request for more roles where Mads Mikkelsen isn’t broodingly intimidating the entire time. His smile is ridiculously infectious and I feel like we don’t see it paired with positive emotions very often🥺🥺🥺