Watch Festen

  • R
  • 1998
  • 1 hr 45 min
  • 8.0  (92,974)
  • 82

Festen, also known as The Celebration in English, is a Danish film from 1998 directed by Thomas Vinterberg. The movie is a part of the Dogme 95 movement which was created to enforce a set of strict rules for filming in order to create more raw and honest movies. Festen takes place during a family gathering where a father's 60th birthday is being celebrated. However, what starts as a joyous occasion quickly becomes a night filled with shocking revelations and dark secrets.

The movie begins with the arrival of Christian, the eldest son of the family, at a luxurious hotel where the family celebration is being held. Christian seems to be the only one who is hesitant about the event, and we soon find out why. The patriarch of the family, Helge, is revealed to have sexually abused both Christian and his sister Linda when they were children. Christian decides that the time has come for him to confront his father and reveal the truth to the rest of the family.

Throughout the night, Christian struggles with the decision to speak out and expose his father's crimes. Meanwhile, the family members engage in drunken antics and small talk while they try to ignore the lingering tension in the air. The only person who seems to grasp the gravity of the situation is Michael, Christian's younger brother, who is the only one who believes Christian's accusations.

The performances in Festen are outstanding, particularly those of Ulrich Thomsen as Christian and Henning Moritzen as Helge. Thomsen portrays Christian's inner turmoil with great depth and intensity, while Moritzen delivers a chilling performance as the manipulative and cruel patriarch. The rest of the cast also put in strong performances, with Thomas Bo Larsen standing out as Michael, the only member of the family who is willing to listen to Christian.

Festen is a film that explores important themes such as family secrets, abuse, and forgiveness. The way the movie deals with these themes is both thought-provoking and emotionally powerful. The film's use of handheld cameras and natural lighting gives it a raw and immersive feel, which adds to the sense of realism.

Overall, Festen is an outstanding movie that deals with difficult subject matter with sensitivity and depth. The performances are excellent, the cinematography is raw and compelling, and the story is both shocking and moving. The film is a must-see for anyone interested in powerful and thought-provoking cinema.

Festen doesn't appear to be available from any streaming services.
Add this movie to your Watchlist to get notified when it's available.
  • Release Date
  • MPAA Rating
  • Runtime
    1 hr 45 min
  • IMDB Rating
    8.0  (92,974)
  • Metascore