False Trail - Cinema Review

'Stormare sports a goatee which screams 'I have layers here, hidden beneath my facial hair, and not all of them are good''

The latest of many Scandinavian Thrillers currently doing a good trade in cinemas and on TV (this is from the producers of The Killing and The Bridge), False Trail will work wonders for anyone holding out hope they might one day see a big screen adaptation of Wallander.

Lead investigator Erik Bäckström (Rolf Lassgård) arrives in small town Sweden, shipped in from the city to help backwoods policemen Peter Stormare and Johan Paulsen solve the mystery of a disappearing girl. Erik is somewhere just past middle-aged, a bit saggy round the waist, a great investigator and an admirer of opera. Pretend to yourself that he drives an old car and has a senile father and you're incredibly close to Henning Mankell's novels and their various adaptations.

As such, there is the slight feeling that False Trail is a TV production without big screen credentials. The production values aren't bad but they never feel grand enough for the cinema and there's a distinct lack of the type of set piece which would set this apart from being a Sunday night two-parter. Still, if you're a fan of the Scandi Murder-Mystery, there will be pleasure in experiencing it on the big screen.

There is one budget-kicker in the shape of Stormare, who's been plying his trade in Hollywood for long enough now to be a recognisable face to most people. Returning to his native Sweden he is predictably the best thing in this by quite a long way. Sporting a goatee which screams 'I have layers here, hidden beneath my facial hair, and not all of them are good', he prowls across the screen and develops tough cop Torsten into a somewhat revelatory portrayal of the psyche of a small-town lawmaker.

Some story quibbles do raise their head every so often, such as the moment in the third act where Erik inexplicably realises that nobody has bothered to search the missing girl's flat, despite the police knowing of its existence all along. Still, problems like that partially come with the territory and, if nothing else, this deserves to be watched in order to see the best on-screen reaction to a slap-in-the-face ever, presented for your viewing please at around the sixty-nine minute mark.

False Trail is released in UK cinemas on Friday 14th December 2012.

1 comment:

  1. This was a great movie review. I will have to try to find this one. I am very interested now.