Northwest Mark Kermode Review
This Copenhagen-set lowlife crime-thriller replaces the Nordic knitwear of popular Scandi-noir with a hand-held aesthetic closer to the downbeat grime of Nicolas Winding Refn’s Pusher series or the Denmark-born strictures of the Dogme project. Real-life brothers Gustav and Oscar Dyekjær Giese (newcomers cast via Facebook) star as Caspar and Andy, small-time burglars working the city’s Nordvest district who attract the attentions of gang-leader, drug dealer and pimp Bjorn.
As Caspar starts to ascend the greasy pole of Bjorn’s empire, rivalries flare with local fence Jamal, provoking violence which threatens the brothers’ extended family. Boasting solid performances from its aspiring leads, Michael Noer’s second dramatic feature (after the acclaimed R: Hit First, Hit Hardest, co-directed with Tobias Lindholm) draws on his experience as an accomplished documentarian to conjure a convincingly street-level portrait of largely unromanticised crime. While the story itself may lack originality, the miserablist milieu is affectingly real.