• A Serious Game

    Directed by Pernilla August
    Sweden/Denmark/Norway | 115 minutes | World Cinema Now

  • A Serious Game

    Directed by Pernilla August
    Sweden/Denmark/Norway | 115 minutes | World Cinema Now

An achingly sensual story of love and adultery set in the early years of the 20th century, this is an adaptation of a classic 1912 novel by Hjalmar Söderberg about a passionate affair between a painter and a journalist. “A visual delight [with] a deft screenplay by Lone Scherfig.” Screen

film synopsis

An achingly sensual story of love and adultery set in the early years of the 20th century, A Serious Game is an adaptation of a classic 1912 novel by Hjalmar Söderberg that centers on the passionate affair between painter Lydia Stille and journalist Arvid Stjärnblom. It begins when they are young and penniless, but after Arvid delays asking for her hand, the impetuous Lydia vanishes. Nevertheless, when they meet again a decade later, their connection sparks once more, wreaking havoc on their respective marriages, children and positions in the straitlaced society of the time.

Adapted by Lone Scherfig (An Education) and evocatively directed by the veteran actress Pernilla August (The Best Intentions; Star Wars: The Phantom Menace), A Serious Game reflects on the damage wrought by the "pure, untainted" love Lydia and Arvid both dream of, blind to the sacrifices their choices will entail.

"A tale of a ruinous extramarital passion, elevated by the film's visual restraint-a cool Nordic palette of creams and pale grays framed in Academy ratio." Jessica Kiang, Indiewire

film details

Director: Pernilla August
Producers: Patrik Andersson, Frida Bargo, Fredrik Heinig
Screenwriter: Lone Scherfig
Cinematographers: Erik Molberg Hansen
Editor: Åsa Mossberg
Music: Matti Bye
Cast: Sverrir Gudnason, Karin Franz Körlof, Liv Mjönes, Michael Nyqvist, Mikkel Boe Følsgaard
Original Language Title: Den allvarsamma leken
Country: Sweden/Denmark/Norway
Language: Swedish
Deaf Friendly: Yes
Year: 2016
Running Time: 115 minutes

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