Film Review: Ondskan

Drama, Sweden 2003, ”Evil””Ondskan” is a film based upon Jan Guillou’s bestselling novel with the same name, which itself is based upon Guillou’s childhood, and the main character Erik Ponti is according to Guillou himself. Throughout the film, the sountrack is most silence, but in some scenes, it is the echoed music from when Erik’s mother played the piano in the beginning of the film. Since it is the 1960’s, several characters, including Eric, listens to artists such as Elvis Presley, and this is also played in the background on LP players quite often. The film won one Gulbagge (a Swedish film prize) and was nominated for an Oscar as the best foreign film of the year.The film is about 16-year-old Erik Ponti, whose stepfather uses corporal punishment on him, and resulting in this Erik is violent at school. As he in the beginning of the film is found assaulting another student, he is expelled and to finish his last year of the obligatory school, he goes to Stjärnberg, a luxuary boarding school. He promises his mother to try this time, try not to fight and try to finish school, and at first he thinks it’ll work. But Stjärnberg uses a system where not the teachers, but the older students, keeps the order in the school. And the school has rules such as that the other students has no choice but to obey the older’s orders. And when you don’t obey them, when you swear, when you stick up… you are punished. Erik Ponti at first tries to go by their rules, but is by time forced to stick up more, and he ruffles up the whole system.I liked the film a lot, and I’ve watched it several times. I especially like the style of the film (barely any soundtrack, no clear colors etcetera), and some scenes and quotes are really great.

 *******seven stars

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