Utøya: July 22: there hardly will be any film this year, or in most years for that matter, more tense and terrifying than Erik Poppe’s account of the massacre that happened in the time and place that title this. It is a very claustrophobic experience (even thought it takes place in an open space). Firstly, there’s very little context given (mostly one gets what one brings in), but context doesn’t matter at all when the main character is running and hiding for her life. Secondly, the impressive camerawork of Martin Otterbeck (which emulates the whole action as one single take) doesn’t leave the company of the protagonist. Sound cues, shots and shouts, is all the clue that is given to what is happening away from her (needless to say, it’s a great work of sound design). Andrea Berntzen is a very effective presence, able to hold the interest for the whole time; the nature of the film doesn’t give much space for the other performers, but in general the panic is palpable.
Read also: 22 July (It is curious that Poppe out-Greengrass Paul Greengrass when dealing with the same episode.)