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With: Tomas Lemarquis, Elin Hansdottir, Throstur Leo Gunnarsson, Anna Fridriksdottir, Petur Einarsson
Written by: Dagur Kári
Directed by: Dagur Kári
MPAA Rating: PG-13 for language and brief nudity
Language: Icelandic with English subtitles
Running Time: 90
Date: 03/19/2013

Nói (2004)

3 1/2 Stars (out of 4)

Iceland Cometh

By Jeffrey M. Anderson

Dagur Kári's Nói (a.k.a. Nói Albinói, or "Noi the Albino") begins as a standard quirky, indie coming-of-age film, but slowly -- like melting ice -- turns into something more profound and genuinely touching. Tomas Lemarquis stars as seventeen year-old Nói, a restless resident of Iceland, living on a remote Northern fjord that is cut off by snow and ice every winter. Bored with school and with almost everything else, he meets a coffeehouse girl, Iris (Elin Hansdottir) and begins to make plans to run away with her. Kári imbues the film with a quiet sense of deadpan, such as an early scene in which Nói's grandmother awakens him by firing a shotgun out the window. Many wonderful scenes exist merely to establish atmosphere and, refreshingly, do not exist only to further the plot, such as Nói spilling a pot of animal blood (don't ask) all over his father and grandmother, listening to Kierkegaard in a bookshop, or becoming fascinated with a View Master image of a tropical island. It's almost like an Icelandic Garden State, except that it grows more and more profound as it inches toward its bizarre conclusion. Don't miss this lovely little gem that suffered from a poor theatrical push.

DVD Details: Palm Pictures' new DVD includes a making-of documentary, deleted scenes and a theatrical trailer.

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