What the absolute f*** did I just watch? An absurd Danish comedy featuring cartoon style, slapstick violence and a title that is a lot more literal than I had imagined. Written and directed by prolific Danish scriptwriter and sometime director Anders Thomas Jensen this is the kind of film that really has to be seen to be believed.
A perfect balance of black (oh god so, so black) humour and pathos, this movie is a testament to ATJ’s wonderfully deft touch with both. The characters, surreal and ridiculous as they are, are played with such humanity and conviction, that one cannot help but love them all, every last weird, disgusting one of them.
As dual-lead, David Dencik is both loathsome and pathetically lovable as Gabriel, as is an almost unrecognisable Søren Malling as Franz. However, whereas it’s normally Nicolaj Lie Haas that takes the comedic football and runs uncontested for the touchline, ‘Mænd & Høns’ is (definitely) Mads Mikkelsen‘s movie. As the compulsively masturbating, bombastic Elias, Mikklesen reaps the lion’s share of the comedic lines, delivering them with such incredible timing and bravado you can’t help but think he missed his vocation when he opted for a career as leading-man heart-throb over bumbling idiotic funnyman.
No special features unfortunately, would have loved to see a making of, but we still get a great transfer.
Earns my highest recommendation.
Comedy, Drama | Denmark, 2015 | 15 | Arrow Films | 15th August 2016 (UK) |Dir.Anders Thomas Jensen | David Dencik, Mads Mikkelsen, Nikolaj Lie Kaas, Søren Malling, Nicolas Bro | Buy:Men And Chicken