Forgotten Friday Flick – “Just Another Love Story”

Forgotten Friday FlickThis week we’re once again scouring the foreign movie market for a little romance and who better than the Danish for all things deeply devoted – welcome to Forgotten Friday Flick!  Today we’re jumping feet first into a foreign film that satisfies cinefile enjoyment for all things enchanted.  Granted there are also elements of drama, mystery, lust and lies, but what love affair is complete without such savory side dishes?  Thrilling and beautiful with a hint of tragedy, we’re dissecting a five-star flick that’s not…Just Another Love Story.

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Copenhagen homicide photographer Jonas is a pretty happy man.  He’s married to a wonderful woman, has two great kids and is good at his job.  But something nags at him and even with such blessings Jonas finds himself thinking about what life would be like outside the suburbs.  Then one day while on the highway in his broken down vehicle he inadvertently causes an accident with a passing car and the near death of the driver named Julia.  Utterly guilt ridden, Jonas feels compelled to visit Julia in the hospital and upon arrival finds her in a deep coma surrounded by family. Problem is they mistake Jonas for Julia’s boyfriend Sebastian whom they’ve never met and seeing their obvious grief he hasn’t the heart to tell them.  But then when Julia awakens with a severe case of amnesia, Jonas is forced to take up the role of Sebastian for real and he obsessively begins to take care and develop deep feelings for her, much to the dismay of his own wife and family.  To top things off, there is a severe mystery behind the possible death or disappearance of the real Sebastian – is he indeed gone or waiting to be revealed?

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There’s a lot of style, beauty and stark visual imagery in Just Another Love Story that makes it one wonderful memorable mystery.  The film is reminiscent of Brian De Palma’s Obsession (complete with love and romance going to unhealthy places) with a pinch of Alfred Hitchcock and dash of paranoia thrown in for good measure.  The tones do change frequently, but always in a way that gels with the savvy of the story and doesn’t detract.  It’s a high-risk move that not all films can pull of successfully, but Danish Director Ole Bornedal skillfully uses it to keep the audience guessing from moment to moment – its simply great work.

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But amazing opticals and terrific twists and turns aside, it’s the believable and heartbreaking work of Bornedal’s lead cast that truly seals the deal.  As the lovelorn and looking for meaning in life Jonas, actor Anders S. Berthelsen brings a terrific everyman quality to the work, while actress Rebecka Hemse shines as alluring enigma femme fatale Julia.  The supporting cast also hits all the right notes (especially Jonas’s frustrated wife Mette played by Charlotte Fich), but it’s the chemistry within a lie between the two leads that gives the story sizzle.

So while there are admittedly quite a few noir thrillers out in the vast cinematic universe, this one gets a recommend for boldly going a step further.  Combining all the suspense tropes film folks love, but all the while adding more that provide extra dramatic layers, the hidden gem Just Another Love Story ironically proves to be anything but.

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I'm a passionate and opinionated film critic/movie journalist with over 20 years of experience in writing about film - now exclusively for WhySoBlu.com. Previous sites include nine years at Starpulse.com where I created Forgotten Friday Flick back in 2011, before that as Senior Entertainment Editor for The213.net and 213 Magazine, as well as a staff writer for JoBlo.com. My other love is doing cool events for the regular guy with my company Flicks For Fans alongside my friend, partner and Joblo.com writer James "Jimmy O" Oster. Check us out at www.Facebook.com/FlicksForFans.

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