Cert: TBC Runtime: 116 mins Director: Joachim Trier Cast: Eili Harboe, Kaya Wilkins, Ellen Dorrit Petersen and Henrik Rafaelsen
Joachim Trier is at the forefront of Norwegian filmmakers at the moment. With Louder Than Bombs and Oslo, August 31st under his belt Thelma is his latest. It has received wide praise across the festival circuit and it has now arrived at LFF. Foreign language horror is a genre within itself and I will always watch them. What is Thelma about you ask? Thelma (Eili Harboe) is a young biology student living away from her strict family for the first time. While she attempts to enjoy her new-found independence, her parents’ influence remains palpable, thanks to regular phone calls in which they check up on their daughter’s every move. But Thelma’s life is turned upside down when she meets beautiful classmate Anja, whose presence appears to awaken long-dormant, supernatural powers within her.
Thelma is a mysterious drama-supernatural-thriller, once it’s out for distribution I hope it will not be miss sold as a horror! Thelma is beautifully shot Joachim Trier is so intricate with the camera. Thought has gone into each scene, and each camera angle. Trier takes his time to evolve a scene and this what enhances Thelma’s watch-ability. The are some scenes with CGI here, and they are very well done. You almost won’t notice they are CG, except from the fact that you know you are watching something impossible. That’s good. Thelma is not heavy on big effect stuff, but the effects that are, are excellent. It’s a slow burn film, it kept my interest through out. It won’t be for everyone but I would implore a cinema lover to give it a try. As for Eili Harbore gives a 21st century face lift to Carrie for me. She has such a haunting stare, but her journey as a new university student to her sexual awakening is just breathtaking. Kaya Wilkins as the love interest gels well with Eili. She really is the teacher that leads her down the path of sin. Thelma is an LFF highlight for me, and one of the best films of the year.