Panorama | Contemporary World Cinema
This taut, claustrophobic thriller from debuting director Gustav Möller gives us disgraced cop Asger Holm (Jakob Cedergren, on-screen throughout and masterful) who, for some on-the-job screw-up initially unknown to us, has been relegated to the emergency services call room, a job he detests. One night, he takes a call from a woman who is in the midst of being kidnapped, and things descend into chaos very quickly. As he races against time to save her—while never leaving the confines of the call room—the camera stays at his side, immersing us in a tense cat-and-mouse game in which we, the audience, come to identify with our beleaguered protagonist. Möller’s brilliantly controlled camera prowls around capturing Holm’s mounting distress as secrets are revealed—the film does not lack for surprises—and hope begins to fade. Given its superbly gripping qualities, it is hardly a surprise to learn that Möller’s film continues to capture audience awards at festivals around the world.
"Despite focusing entirely on a single individual speaking into a headset… The Guilty nevertheless emerges as a twisty crime thriller that’s every bit as pulse-pounding and involving as its action-oriented, adrenaline-soaked counterparts… Möller masterfully ratchets up tension without the benefit of the usual visual aids, forcing viewers to dust off their imaginations and put them to work with chillingly effective results."—Michael Rechtshaffen, Hollywood Reporter
Audience Awards, Sundance 18 and Rotterdam 18