Thale Film Review
A Norwegian supernatural thriller written and directed by Aleksander Nordaas, Thale is rooted heavily in Norse Folklore, it is an interesting premise but not without its share of problems.
The first problem is with some of the performances, most notably the two leading men. Whilst they have a decent enough chemistry between them it’s not enough to carry them through the film. Erland Nervold’s Elvis seems to drift from compassionate to gormless at the flip of a switch, which is a shame because when he is convincing his character works well, just the vacant facial expressions really let him down. John Sigve Skard doesn’t fare much better, definitely the calmer more rational character of the two, he seems to over-play this element to the point where Leo seems utterly bored and non-plussed by the events surrounding him.
It’s not all bad news when it comes to the acting though, Silje Reinåmo is absolutely fantastic as the titular Thale and delivers an almost silent performance brilliantly well. She conveys just the right amount of vulnerability and hidden savagery to make Thale a truly memorable creature.
Thankfully when it comes to plot there are lot more positives, Thale does tell an intriguing and emotive story and it’s admirably short at around 74 minutes. If that sounds like a criticism then it isn’t, it is genuinely nice to see a film delivered in a tight running time, so often films can feel bloated when it’s obvious they have been filled out to hit the oh so desirable 90 minute running time. The film builds a good sense of mystery from the outset and this, coupled with the single location, keep you interested throughout.
Visually the film is shot well, it just struggles a little from a lack of budget, the effects work is decent enough considering constraints but with a little more money to play with we could have the next Troll Hunter on our hands here. The visuals in the final act are worthy of a mention though, slow motion is something audiences are a little sick of at the moment but it’s implemented well here and enhances rather than overpowers the scenes.
So, whilst it’s not a classic there is a great concept here and a decent enough film, well worth a watch. Thankfully there is more than enough good stuff on display to show with enough money behind him Nordaas could make something like Thale again and deliver on the promise he has shown.