D. Elliot | UK | 11/04/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It is wonderful to see 'Lakki' (Norwegian language, English subtitles) finally rescued from the VHS-only graveyard which still entombs many of its equally-auspicious siblings. The film won the 'Best Picture' award at the Griffoni Film Festival in 1992, and it is not difficult to see why. Director Sven Wam ('Sebastian' etc) has created a stunning arthouse work; a truly unforgettable exploration of a young male's tormented inner-struggles (brilliantly portrayed by the incredibly-talented Anders Borchgrevink).
Lakki is 14 and battles against multiple demons. His parents had a passionate love-hate relationship, and apparently broke up and reunited a number of times, before his father finally left and set up home with another woman. The violence of the passions have clearly taken a toll on Lakki. He fantasises about distant memories of a (fleeting) time when his parents were happy and calm, and imbues this memory with almost erotic significance. There is suggestion that Lakki has been treated by a psychotherapist in the past, and that he is apt to 'attacks'. Perhaps this mental disturbance is inherited from his mother, with whom he lives. A highly volatile character - possibly bi-polar - she swings between extreme happiness and utter despair, not helped by her abuse of alcohol and transitory flings with a string of male lovers (including a swimming coach who has bullied Lakki at school). Lakki's father is equally ineffectual and highly inconsistent in his approach to Lakki; ditching him in a bar, and forbidding him entry to his apartment (at the behest of his pregnant girlfriend).
The film starkly conveys the effects of such circumstances on Lakki's already troubled character. Unsurprisingly, the pressures and contradictory messages to which he is subject leave him lost, and he tumbles through a series of negative experiences at school, an attempt at hustling, drugs and steady mental deterioration. These experiences, seen through Lakki's confused perspective, are often times dream-like and surreal. Lakki frequently sees angel 'wings' beginning to sprout from his shoulder blades, as he tries to escape from whatever mental or physical turmoil in which he is currently embroiled. The imagery is consistently powerful: burning candles; uncontrollable fire; shining halos; bare white rooms with locked doors. The essence of 'Lakki' is well-summarised by the poignant visual of Lakki, floating naked in a lake, surrounded by childhood toys.
It will be clear from the above that 'Lakki' is very far from being a run-of-the-mill, heart-warming, coming-of-age flick. It is dark, gritty and offers no optimism. Further, the absence of linear story-telling means that Lakki's grim present is seen to exist contemporaneously with his past, revealed through hallucinatory flashbacks. 'Lakki' is an unmissable masterpiece of cinema, finally brought to DVD."
A Strange, Interesting, Funny Film
Amos Lassen | Little Rock, Arkansas | 07/16/2007
(4 out of 5 stars)
""Lakki: The Boy Who Could Fly"
A Strange, Interesting, Funny Film
Amos Lassen and Cinema Pride
"Lakki" is a special film. It is surreal as it tells the story of a fourteen year old boy who dreams of escaping his unhappy home where he suffers sexual abuse (from his mother's boyfriend who is also his swimming coach). One day, as if by magic, he finds himself having feathered wigs and he can fly away metaphorically.
"Lakki" is one of the strangest films I have ever seen but that does not take away from its quality. As Lakki deals with his crazy and selfish parents, he is growing up physically. His mother manages to become involved with weird men and she speaks to her son as if they are friends and not mother and son. When she becomes involved with Lakki's gym teacher, we learn that he has been sexually abusing her son. Lakki's dad is about the same--mixed up and foolish. He is an irresponsible womanizer who is unsympathetic to his son's needs and pain. Lakki spends most of his time alone, sometimes coming into contact with a cast of eccentric and odd characters that he meets on the street.
One day Lakki discovers angel wings growing out of his back and they come and go as he does the right thing. It seemed to me that I was watching a fairy tale although I did not catch the moral.
Some of the visuals are absolutely unbelievably good and the characters are fascinating. There is a great deal of homo-erotic imagery which seemed to me to both dumb and self-effacing.
Anders Borchgrevink who plays Lakki has an odd and interesting screen presence and he is totally believable as the angry, abused teenager. He is also responsible for the humor in the film. Lakki's mother played by Nina Gunke is marvelous and not at all bad to look at. All of the cast members are good looking and it is fun to hear spoken Norwegian. It's a strange movie but I recommend it highly.
There are many very funny moments but the movie would have been much funnier if it had been done as satire and full of irony.
Lakki the boy who could fly
Patrick Murphy | EIRE | 03/22/2009
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I enjoyed this movie. and found myself feeling that there anything was possible. a good story and well played by the young actor. I really enjoyed watching it and would recomend it to anyone who likes looking at child actors."