Culture / Film

Review: The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared @ Glasgow Film Theatre

Felix Herngren’s film adaptation of  Jonas Jonasson’s debut novel, The Hundred-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared is a laugh-out-loud, happy-go-lucky big screen adventure that will appeal to all.

While it made its UK debut at Glasgow Film Festival last week, the motion picture has already taken Sweden by storm, and judging by the reception from viewers at Glasgow Film Theatre this weekend, Britain needs to brace itself.

The plot follows the story of Allan Karlsson who escapes a dull life lived in a nursing home by fleeing from his bedroom window on his 100th birthday. This comic escape takes Allan on an unpredictable escapade where he meets a handful of intriguing beings along the way.

Although set in the present-day, Allan’s backstory appears intermittently throughout the film and reveals that Allan’s life wasn’t always so uninteresting. These flashbacks are depicted with ease and enable viewers to appreciate the care-fare attitude towards the rather tricky situations the protagonist finds himself in.

Herngern’s dedication to the original dialogue of the book is remarkable. The blunt absurdity and characteristics of those portrayed by Jonasson translate to the screen as they fill the theatre’s atmosphere with giggles and applause. There’s not one character in this film that could be disliked. Each with their own individual flare, they bring variety to the film without damaging the humorous tone.

The soundtrack exaggerates the action of the plot – and that’s not a criticism. As the bizarre life Allan leads unfolds, fast-paced tempos kick in and compliment the film’s nonchalant ambience.

The recurring themes of freedom and choice in the story can’t help but make those who watch it ponder on their decisions and reactions concerning events throughout their life. Allan Karllson never wasted any time thinking – his story will make you wonder why you do.

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