On the evening of his retirement as a train engineer, dour sixtysomething Norwegian bachelor Odd Horten (Buster Keaton-ish Baard Owe) learns to live life without a timetable. And since O’Horten is the creation of absurdist Bent Hamer (Kitchen Stories), a master of droll melancholy, Odd’s life is just as peculiar as his name. (For one thing, he finds himself in a car driven by a drunken, blindfolded diplomat, played by Espen Skjonberg.) Like fellow poker-faced Scandinavian filmmaker Aki Kaurismäki, Hamer specializes in dry humor born of long, dark nights. Jack Nicholson’s dyspeptic retiree in About Schmidt would no doubt identify with O’Horten’s entertaining pain. B+
Genre: Drama, Comedy; Starring: Baard Owe; Director: Bent Hamer; Author: Bent Hamer; Release Date Wide: 05/15/2009; Runtime (in minutes): 90; MPAA Rating: PG-13
Posted June 3 2009 — 12:00 AM EDT
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