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Uno

In only a couple of years, 29-year-old Aksel Hennie has become the most talked-about and laureled young actor in Norway, leading some local critics to rate "Uno," his first outing as a writer-director, as a kind of second coming.

With:
With: Aksel Hennie, Nicolai Cleve Broch, Bjorn Floberg, Espen Juul Kristiansen, Martin Skaug, Lars Ahmed Seian, Liv Bernhoft Osa.

In only a couple of years, 29-year-old Aksel Hennie has become the most talked-about and laureled young actor in Norway, leading some local critics to rate “Uno,” his first outing as a writer-director, as a kind of second coming. Henie certainly shows considerable talent but this well-made, interesting look at petty criminals in Oslo tries to include too many storylines, and there’s a certain predictability in both the casting and plot developments. Overall, however, this is a promising debut.

David (Hennie), who lives with his mother, father and retarded brother, spends his days at a local gym run by a smalltime crook (Bjorn Floberg, phoning in his perf). The same day David’s terminally-ill father is hospitalized, the police raid the gym, taking everybody into custody and questioning them about drugs and a gun found at the site. As David wants to see his father before the latter dies, he squeals on the others to get out of custody. Later, he has to face the hatred of his onetime “friends,” plus escalating threats from a thug who reckons David owes him money. Title comes from a popular card game.

Uno

Norway

Production: A Sandrew Metronome release of a Tordenfilm production, in association with Sandrew Metronome, Norsk Filmstudio, TV 2, Canal Plus and Djuice. Produced by Jorgen Storm Rosenberg. Directed, written by Aksel Hennie.

Crew: Camera (color), Jon Andreas Andersen; editor, Vidar Flataukan; music, Ulvber, Tom McRae; art director, Astrid Saetren; costume designer, Camilla Lindblom. Reviewed at Haugesund Film Festival, Norway, Aug. 21, 2004. (Also in Toronto, San Sebastian, London film festivals.) Running time: 103 MIN.

With: With: Aksel Hennie, Nicolai Cleve Broch, Bjorn Floberg, Espen Juul Kristiansen, Martin Skaug, Lars Ahmed Seian, Liv Bernhoft Osa.

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