A bleak and nasty familial drama/thriller, Wildland (Kød & Blod) is the feature film debut of Danish film-maker Jeanette Nordahl and is written by Ingeborg Topsøe.
After the death of her mother in a car accident, 17-year old Ida (Sandra Guldberg Kampp) has to move in with her estranged aunt Bodil (Sidse Babett Knudsen) and her adult sons Jonas (Joachim Fjelstrup), David (Elliott Crosset Hove), and Mads (Besir Zeciri). We soon learn the family operate a criminal business and Ida becomes involved in their horrific crimes, culminating in Ida witnessing her cousins committing a brutal murder.
Wildland is a cruel, bleak, depressing, and frequently shocking exploration of familial loyalty and the consequences of violence. Despite the film’s slow pace, Wildland is never dull thanks to Nordahl ratcheting up the tension in every scene until the violence finally erupts.
The naturalistic performances are mesmerising, the score composed by Puce Mary is haunting and cinematographer David Gallego provides us with a gorgeous looking film.
And the final traumatic and devastating moments left the entire screening with their jaws on the floor.
A familiar drama that becomes a thriller before ending as a tragedy, Wildland is a grim and engrossing debut feature and a highlight of the year’s Scandinavian Film Festival.
Reviewed by Jordan Ellis
Wildland is currently screening as part of the Scandinavian Film Festival at Palace Nova Eastend.
Click here for screening details