Private detective Varg Veum investigates a case where his good friend Evans, a highly decorated ex-army officer, is falsely accused of bombing armakon, a weapons storage facility, and to prove him innocent.
User Reviews: From somewhere around 2007 or 2008 thru (at least) 2012, a bunch of Varg Veum "movies" were produced, the lead role being played by Trond Epsem Seim.
I will be honest with you that I am a huge fan of these Scandinavian mystery series, as is evidenced by other reviews I have written.
This series is challenging to watch. First, what we have are 90 minute movies and any given one will likely put you through the wringer, emotionally. Second, Varg is a private detective and he is also like a first responder: running toward danger rather than away from it. As a result, he is often getting beaten up (sometimes badly). The violence can be painful to watch. Third, the plots can be complicated and for non-native speakers, keeping track of numerous characters difficult.
The writing is excellent. The acting is fantastic. Trond Epsem Seim is magnificent as Varg. His reluctant "partner" on the police force (or is that foil?), Hamre, played by Bjorn Floberg is really great as well. The two actors have a chemistry that clearly shines through the production. Their scenes together are fabulous.
Varg is a strange one. I’m tempted to read the books these movies are based on to see if his character is based on them, or if the quirkiness is a function of the production. He wears his heart on his sleeve, so to speak. And he goes through life pretty much constantly pissing everyone off, although as Hamre points out in one of the movies — he is always forgiven.
I think of this as a television series rather than separate movies but unfortunately IMDB thinks of them as movies so I pretty much randomly chose one of the movies to hang this review off of (although granted this was a particularly good movie with a very unexpected ending).
So yeah, there are lots of plot twists and turns in this movie and the others. You need to pay attention and not get complacent, otherwise you’ll lose the story.
I think through the lifecycle of all the episodes that at least I have access to, they get better and better over time. The last one (Kalde hjerter (Cold Hearts) directed by Trond Epsem Seim) is really excellent and (thankfully!) ends on a happy note (being familiar with the genre, I was expecting something different).
I recommend these if you like mysteries and are not opposed to some violence, and am grateful, as always, to MHz Choice and my streaming subscription for being able to watch them. The subtitles don’t bother me at all and are, in fact, an art form of their own, I think. Being reliant on the subtitles in no way diminishes the story.
The reason I have given this a 9 instead of a 10, to be honest, is that I am not a huge fan of the music. If that’s what you’d call it. It seems to be a lot of percussion and I frankly just don’t enjoy it. I found myself turning the volume down at times just to avoid it (good thing there are subtitles!).