A Man Called Ove / En man som heter Ove

Ever felt like you had a grumpy retiree living inside you? Yes, we know it sounds a bit odd. But on the darkest of days when everyone is bothering you and you want nothing more than some peace and quiet, you can probably relate to Ove.


  • Domestic Premiere: 25th December 2015
  • International Releases: Germany – 7th April 2016


The film adaptation of a popular novel.


Easy viewing with a few laughs, A Man Called Ove is not much more than a good story.


A decent film with little surprises, A Man Called Ove is a good family film.



Based on the highly successful novel of the same name, A Man Called Ove follows the story of the widowed Ove, a man living out his last years bitter and annoyed at the world. He thinks everyone around him are idiots, and the only person who has ever been good enough his is late wife Sonja. After being fired, Ove starts planning to commit suicide so he can be with his wife again. However, his plans are constantly interrupted by everyone around him, especially when the immigrant Parvaneh moves in with her husband and two children next door. Initially annoyed by this, the more time Ove spends with them, the more he starts to look on the bright side of life.

The story of Ove is so popular because of our ability to relate to the protagonist – he is the symbol of something very universal. It’s not hard to see why the story has become so popular, and the film is well aware of the story’s success. In that sense, the film plays it very safe – there is nothing to provoke, urge further reflections or make the film stand out in some way. Everything is so dimmed that Ove at times comes across as not a very complex character, and this is taking into account that over half the film involves flashbacks to his younger days in an attempt to explain his behaviour.

The stand out of the film is Rolf Lassgård, who portrays Ove brilliantly despite script restraints. The film does have some comedic elements, but perhaps not as many as the writers would’ve liked. Overall A Man Called Ove is enjoyable viewing and will appeal to broader audiences.


Emma Vestrheim

Emma Vestrheim is the editor-in-chief of Cinema Scandinavia. Originally from Australia, she is now based in Bergen, Norway, and attends major Nordic film festivals to conduct interviews and review new films.