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OSCARS 2016

FILM

Swede Alicia Vikander wins Oscar for ‘Danish Girl’ role

Swedish star Alicia Vikander has won an Oscar for best supporting actress for her performance in Nordic transgender movie 'The Danish Girl'.

Swede Alicia Vikander wins Oscar for 'Danish Girl' role
Alicia Vikander, winner for Best Supporting Actress for her role in "The Danish Girl", poses backstage at the 88th Academy Awards in Hollywood on Sunday. Photo: Mike Blake/Scanpix
She was honoured for her role in the acclaimed Nordic drama 'The Danish Girl', playing Danish artist Gerda Wegener in a love story about how she and her fellow artist husband Lili Elbe played by British actor Eddie Redmayne, navigate his journey as a transgender pioneer.
 
“Eddie, there you are. Thank you for being the best acting partner. I could have never done it without you. You raised my game,” Vikander said late on Sunday in Hollywood in her acceptance speech.
 
“I want to thank my friends and my mum and dad – thank you for giving me the belief that anything can happen, even though I would have never believed this.”
 
 
She bested fellow nominees Jennifer Jason Leigh ('The Hateful Eight'), Rooney Mara ('Carol'), Rachel McAdams ('Spotlight') and Kate Winslet ('Steve Jobs').
 
Her co-star Redmayne however, who had been nominated for best actor for the same movie, lost out to to Leonardio DiCaprio and 'The Revenant'.
 
Denmark's 'A War' (Krigen) failed to win the Best Foreign Language Film category, losing out to Hungarian WW2 drama 'Son of Saul'. The Tobias Lindholm film has performed well in US theatres and has been sold to at least 20 other countries, but nevertheless will leave Hollywood without an Oscar. 
 
In the Best Documentary Feature category, Joshua Oppenheimer's 'The Look of Silence' was beaten by 'Amy', an inside look at the life of deceased singer Amy Winehouse. Oppenheimer is an American but has lived in Copenhagen for five years and his film was produced by the Danish company Final Cut for Real. 
 

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OSCARS

‘Another Round’: a spirited Oscar-winning ode to life

Danish film ‘Another Round’ (‘Druk’ in the original Danish), which won an Oscar on Sunday for best international feature film, is a dark existential comedy about the joys and dangers of being drunk, and letting go to embrace life.

'Another Round': a spirited Oscar-winning ode to life
Thomas Vinterberg accepts the Oscar for International Feature Film on behalf of Denmark.Photo: A.m.p.a.s/Reuters/Ritzau Scanpix

It is the fourth Danish film to win an Oscar for best non-English language film, after ‘In A Better World’ in 2011, ‘Pelle the Conqueror’ in 1989 and ‘Babette’s Feast’ in 1988.

Filmmaker Thomas Vinterberg, who is also nominated for best director, gave a moving, tearful speech, paying tribute to his daughter Ida, who was killed in a car accident four days after shooting began in May 2019.

“We ended up making this movie for her, as her monument,” Vinterberg said at the gala in Los Angeles.

“So, Ida, this is a miracle that just happened, and you’re a part of this miracle. Maybe you’ve been pulling some strings somewhere, I don’t know. But this one is for you.”

The movie is set around four old friends, all teachers at a high school near Copenhagen. Martin, played by Mads Mikkelsen, is a history teacher going through a midlife crisis, depressed about his monotone life.

To spice things up, the quartet decides to test an obscure theory that humans are born with a small deficit of alcohol in their blood, resolving to keep their blood alcohol level at a constant 0.05 percent from morning till night.

At first, they experience the liberating joys of inebriation, before things quickly go from bad to worse. 

But the film refrains from passing moral judgement or glorifying alcohol.

“‘Another Round’ is imagined as a tribute to life. As a reclaiming of the irrational wisdom that casts off all anxious common sense and looks down into the very delight of lust for life … although often with deadly consequences,” Vinterberg said when the movie came out last year.

Vinterberg was devastated by the loss of his daughter, and production on the movie was briefly halted, but he soon resumed shooting.

He said he was spurred on by a letter she had written about her enthusiasm for the project, in which she was to have had a role.

But the film took on a new dimension.

“The film wasn’t going to be just about drinking anymore. It had to be about being brought back to life,” Vinterberg said in the only in-depth interview he has given about her death, in June 2020 to Danish daily Politiken.

Selected for the 2020 Cannes Film Festival which ended up being cancelled due to the pandemic, ‘Another Round has already won several awards, including a BAFTA for best film not in the English language, and a Cesar in France for best foreign film.

The film is carried by Mikkelsen, who previously teamed up with Vinterberg in the 2012 psychological thriller ‘The Hunt’ (‘Jagten’).

In one of the most talked-about scenes in ‘Another Round’, Mikkelsen even shows off his dance talent — the former Bond villain was a professional contemporary dancer before becoming an actor.

READ ALSO: How Danish Oscar-nominated dark booze comedy was inspired by director’s tragic loss

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