The Hunt

Director: Thomas Vinterberg
Year Released: 2012
Rating: 3.0

A kindergarten teacher (Mads Mikkelsen) finds his life fall apart and his reputation (permanently) scarred when one of his female students, Klara (Annika Wedderkopp), makes (vague) statements that suggest he exposed himself to her - this, of course, is untrue, but the adage that 'children don't lie' (they do, sometimes) has the community vilifying the teacher. Based on true stories of children who falsely accuse adults of molestation (the number of cases of this occurring is sad and alarming), it's also very perceptive in how it shows mass hysteria consuming the neighborhood and even how the parents reinforce to the kids that they were molested (when Klara, in her quirky, weird way tries to tell her Mom she misspoke and said 'something stupid,' her Mom won't hear of it). The way Mikkelsen's character handles it is strange - he's a fairly taciturn guy, and the fact that he doesn't scream to high-heavens that he's innocent (which I would do) is peculiar: when he finally explodes at his 'best friend' (the father of the little girl) during church, it's an act of emotion that's a long-time coming. Should be essential viewing for anyone who wants to become a teacher not as a scare tactic, but as a word of caution.