The Hunt (Jagten)(2012) Film Review

The Hunt

This Danish film finds teacher, Lucas (Mads Mikkelsen), estranged from his wife, trying for greater custody with his teenage son, Marcus (Lasse Fogelstrom) and whose school has closed, working in a kindergarten. His best friend Theo (Thomas Bo Larsen) has a daughter, Klara (Annika Wedderkopp) in the class, and as her parents are fighting a lot, she latches on to the innocent attention that Lucas gives her. However, after he feels she is getting too attached, she feels slighted and makes a comment to the woman who runs the kindergarten, Agnes (Anne Louise Hassing) that suggests Lucas has been sexually inappropriate. Things are handled in a manner that quickly turns almost everyone against Lucas in a most distressing fashion.

I knew this would be a difficult film. It is certainly sadtacular; the whole time, I was wondering that, if I knew a child who had made the type of comment Klara did, would I immediately suspect something? What if it was someone I knew well? Often, you hear of people who suddenly turn out to be a total creep; and the innocence of children is just so important. What do you do? Annika Wedderkopp is gorgeous with her innocence and realisation that she may have made a huge error, and Mads Mikkelsen is able to convey a massive amount of emotion in his stillness.

The Hunt was nominated for an Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film of the Year.