Force Majeure

Director: Ruben Östlund
Year Released: 2014
Rating: 2.0

A husband (Johannes Kuhnke), his wife (Lisa Loven Kongsli) and their two children go on a skiing vacation to the French Alps where an incident with a (planned) avalanche makes the wife question her spouse's 'bravery' and loyalty to his family - she then proceeds to hammer on this the entire trip, making the husband more and more miserable. Intended as a statement about gender roles and the role of the father as 'all protecting force' - made redundant with Kongsli's incessant harping (let's face it: an avalanche is terrifying) - it concludes with the husband being vindicated when Mom has a freak out on a bus and is all too quick to get out, leaving everyone behind (a very forced moment by Östlund). For a movie that beats up on Dad for being a liar, a cheat and a 'coward,' the final scene doesn't exactly 'turn the tables,' and their relationship has more underlying problems than the movie has time to address. Loktev's criminally underrated The Loneliest Planet - which I'm positive Östlund has seen - takes a similar situation and imbues it with more subtlety.