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Book-to-film review: The Exception

Book-to-film review: The Exception

gr's resident book and film buff reviews The Exception, based on the book of the same name by Christian Jungersen.

Four women, Iben, Malene, Anne-Lise and Camille, work together in the fictional Danish Centre for Genocide Information (DCGI) disseminating details of tyranny and atrocities. When two of the women receive death threats Mirko Zigic, a Serbian war criminal, is suspected. He’d been exposed by the Centre in a recent issue of its journal. Anxieties increase when Interpol advises that Zigic has been traced to Denmark.

People everywhere are fallible, capable of kindness and cruelty. The four women are no different. Even before the threats, minor and more worrying instances of conflict are apparent within the claustrophobic confines of such a small office. When a third member of staff starts to receive the disturbing emails but not the fourth, the possibility of the culprit being closer to home is considered.

The film exquisitely juxtaposes the evil unearthed by the women worldwide with the cruelty that’s starting to seep into their interpersonal relationships: macro versus micro.

Evil can spread like a silent, deadly virus. Paranoia and obsessions can drive ordinary people to commit unthinkable acts.

Directed by Jasper W. Neilsen with a script based on a book by Christian Jungersen, the direction, music, and major performances are admirable. The movie’s an intelligent and thought-provoking thriller that spirals toward tragedy.

The film was either intensely atmospheric or it had the most miniscule lighting budget since Scrooge gave up producing films.

Rating: 3 1/2 stars out of 5.

Reviewed by Clive Hodges.