Review: ‘Illusions’

Produced by Peter Kropenin. Directed, written by Lars Mullback. Camera (color), Jan Weincke; editor, Susanne Linnman; production design, Ragna Herrgard , Sigbrit Larsson; costume design, Malin Bergendal; sound (Dolby), Olle Unnerstad. Reviewed at Svensk Filmindustri screening room, Stockholm, Sept. 5, 1994. Running time: 96 MIN.

Produced by Peter Kropenin. Directed, written by Lars Mullback. Camera (color), Jan Weincke; editor, Susanne Linnman; production design, Ragna Herrgard , Sigbrit Larsson; costume design, Malin Bergendal; sound (Dolby), Olle Unnerstad. Reviewed at Svensk Filmindustri screening room, Stockholm, Sept. 5, 1994. Running time: 96 MIN.

Christer … Anders Ekborg

Erik … Reine Brynolfsson

Marie … Jonna Jarnefeldt

Karin … Birgitte Sondergaard

Kjell … Claes Mansson

Rut … Siv Ericks

A less than spellbinding Hitchcockian thriller centering on a love triangle and insurance fraud, “Illusions” suffers from some credibility-straining gaps in logic and an uncharismatic perf by lead actress Jonna Jarnefeldt. Despite its technical prowess, pic looks like a shaky B.O. bet.

Central character is cabdriver Christer (Anders Ekborg), whose lonely, quiet existence is shaken up by the arrival of a new couple in the small rural town. The woman, Marie (Jarnefeldt), is paralyzed from the neck down and bedridden, but Christer falls suddenly in love with her.

Plot takes several twists and turns, including the goriest murder ever depicted in a major Swedish movie. Hitchcockian angle surfaces in Christer being convicted of murder and having to escape to prove his innocence.

Rug is pulled from under the pic by Jarnefeldt’s lackluster playing, which doesn’t help to explain Christer’s passionate love for Marie.

Story behind the making of the pic is more interesting. Writer-director Lars Mullback made several shorts before this first feature, and fact that he himself is handicapped by a brain disease generated lots of media coverage in Sweden.

Illusions

(SWEDISH)

Production

A Svensk Filmindustri release (in Sweden) of an Omega Film/Svensk Filmindustri/Swedish Film Institute/Tonservice production. (International sales: Nordisk Film-TV Distribution, Stockholm.)
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