A White White Day, Iceland’s Robert De Niro Shines In This Uncut Gem

A  White White Day(Icelandic)

Starring  Ingvar Eggert Sigurðsson as Ingimundur,Ída Mekkín Hlynsdóttir as Salka

Directed by  Hlynur Pálmason

Rating: ***1/2

The  only reason I can think of  why Ingvar Eggert Sigurðsson is not known globally as  a phenomenal actor is his hard-to-pronounce  name. Think. If Amitabh Bachchan was  called  Ingvar Eggert Sigurðsson, would he  be the  icon that  he is ?

In White White Night, a  tightly-wound Icelandic  drama about a grieving raging widower  who discovers  his dead wife was unfaithful to him, Ingvar Eggert Sigurðsson is   cast as Ingimundur, a cop so burnt out  he  can ignite a  fire  with  the  embers  of his  smouldering angst. The lead actor’s rage  and   grief  can  be  felt  in every frame, and  his inability  to come  to terms  with  his irreparable loss is so palpable  I could feel it in every frame.

 The lead  performance stands heads  and shoulders  above the  film, giving to the well-crafted thoughtful  chilling  drama  a dimension  that is  unmissable. Ingimundur is  portrayed as a loner with a loving family. His  relationship with his grand daughter Salka(Ída Mekkín Hlynsdóttir) is  specially remarkable. And  to see the two bonding  almost for the entire  length  of  the  film is a pleasure.  This  is  the  third film in the last two months where a little girl bonds  with the   aging hero. Earlier   I saw George Clooney and Tom Hanks in a similar bonding in  Midnight Sky and  News  Of  The World.

 The  grandfather-granddaughter  bonding in A  White White Day is  extraordinarily  vivid. It colours practically every other interaction in the  film. That  Ingimundur is deeply troubled is established   from the outset. And he hates  being reminded  of it. In a this-could-be-funny-if-it-were-not-so-sad  sequence he smashes his computer  during an online  session  with his  shrink when the shrunk asks, “Do you  ever cry?”

The  film’s austerity  of expression matches that  of the leading man. The  director cuts the  scenes  just when they begin to settle down, thereby echoing the protagonist’s  state  of mind. I didn’t like the way  Ingimundur stalks and  tortures his  dead wife’s lover. But then everyone handles grief  in a different way.

 In the final sequence Ingimundur invites a prostitute  to help him pay back his wife for  her betrayal.All Ingimundur can do is stare at the naked woman,  his eyes turning into streams of  hurt emotions. I wish his shrink was  there to see that closing sequence. He  would  have got his answer and no computer would have been destroyed.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Social profiles