Lukas Moodysson / U.S.A., Thailand
by Shelly S.
Here is a film with a great cast, perfect locations and a message that should bring a worldwide awareness of how people spend their money while others do without it. But this is the first time that I have ever heard a Berlinale audience boo a competition film. There were three children in this movie and all of them had something in common: their parents were chasing the buck but not raising the kids. I realized that the biggest problem was that I did not feel sympathy or compassion for any of these characters. I truly blame the director and the screenwriter for giving us this apathetic feeling. There were several moments in this film where the characters could move closer to the audience. Why did the father who supposedly was so different, have to sleep with the Thai prostitute? Why did the wife have to continue to work at this hospital when she herself was barely handling her emotional pain? How many times did the audience have to look into this over-sized refrigerator full of food? (Only about six or seven times!) The biggest flaw was that we were drawn into a melodramatic scene where the little boy is raped while his mother, who is a nanny in the US, leaves the other little girl in the middle of the night to fly to the Philippines to be with her son. The scene was so ridiculously outrageous and out of character that the audience could not even relate to the severity of the situation. The final and worst scene was the ending where the father comes home, rough housing with his wife and daughter as though nothing has happened. Horrible movie!