Iceland, 2015, 93 min, 2K DCP, Dir. Grímur Hákonarson, Rated R for brief graphic nudity and language, Cohen Media Group, Icelandic with English subtitles
"Tender and poignant, it also has the haunting authority of an ancient stone carving, as if these brothers were ordinary flesh-and-blood creatures transformed into figures of myth." - A. O. Scott, The New York Times
While living next door to one another, two aging brothers locked in a decades-long feud go to dryly comical extremes to avoid communication with each other. But they share a passionate love for the sheep to whom they’ve dedicated their lives and land. When one of their sheep contracts a contagious disease, the livelihood of the brothers and their neighbors is threatened. Writer-director Grímur Hákonarson, a master of mournful wordless comic set-pieces, with cinematographer Sturla Brandth Grøvlen (Victoria), makes maximum expressive use of the bleakly beautiful Icelandic mountain landscapes. But it’s the almost wordless performances of the brothers that lead to an unexpectedly passionate resolution. Who could have expected Iceland, sheep and septuagenarian bachelors to be this funny, and this thrilling? Rams is Iceland’s Official Entry to the Oscars and winner of the Un Certain Regard Award at the Cannes Film Festival.