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cover: Hamsun

Hamsun

Director(s): Jan Troell

Theatrical Release: 1997

Cast: Max von Sydow, Nina Englund, Per Jansen, Per Christensen, Svein Gundersen, Finn Schau

Genre(s): Drama, biography, politics

Countries: Denmark, Sweden, Norway


Location in store: Scandinavian Cinema

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Running Time: 154m.

This powerful Scandinavian biopic chronicles the fall of one of Norway's most respected authors, Knut Hamsun (played by Max von Sydow in one of his most acclaimed performances) who up until WW II was considered one of the greatest Norwegians of the 20th century. At the dawn of the war, the Nobel Prize winning author shocked his countrymen by publicly siding with the Nazis. His wife Marie took it a step further and went to Germany to give lectures. Following the war, both were convicted and branded as traitors. Hamsun attempts to answer the questions surrounding the author and his wife's treachery. By the time the war erupted, Hamsun was an elderly curmudgeon who could barely hear. A profoundly lonely man with hatred of British Imperialism, he was an easy target for Nazi propaganda. His wife Marie, who in Norway is still more vilified than her husband, also had her reasons to support the German party, but while though-provoking, they don't invite much sympathy. -- Sandra Brennan (allmovie.com)
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