Review of Magnus von Horn’s The Here After

Magnus von Horn’s rendezvous with the troubled adolescent for his feature debut The Here After sees history repeating itself. The young Swedish filmmaker, whether consciously or not, follows in the celebrated footsteps of legendary New Wave auteur François Truffaut, and his debut Les Quatre Cents Coups.

Unlike Antoine Doneil’s journey towards adolescent incarceration, von Horn’s protagonist John (Ulrik Munther) enters from the opposite side of the stage, where, upon his return home, he struggles to reintegrate into a society that is both willing and unwilling to forgive his past crime .Von Horn has crafted a film with moral resonance whereby the struggle to forgive and the desire to move on are both understandable motivations.The art house sensibility of the cinematography that frequently follows John and his family is striking alongside the use of silent naturalism and verbal restraint. Whilst the latter nurtures our curiosity, the camera becomes the embodiment of the haunting past; a voyeuristic spectre that is haunting the family’s present and its future.

Paul Risker

Credit:
1.  Still from Magnus van Horn’s The Here After (2015). Courtesy of Soda Pictures.