Screened as part of NZIFF 2007

You, the Living 2007

Du Levande

Directed by Roy Andersson

Denmark / France / Germany / Norway / Sweden In Swedish with English subtitles
90 minutes 35mm

Director, Screenplay


Gustav Danielsson


Anna Märta Waern


Robert Hefter


Jessica Lundberg
Elisabeth Helander
Björn Englund


Cannes (Un Certain Regard) 2007


Bristly amusing, frequently random and often laugh-out-loud hilarious, welcome to the cinema of Swedish maestro Roy Andersson, who follows his 2001 Festival hit Songs from the Second Floor with another darkly comic symphony on the bleak state of 21st-century existence. This time around he strikes a jauntier, less despairing tone, throwing in an out-of-place Dixieland jazz quartet (heavy on the tuba) to playfully underscore his poker-faced gags.

You, the Living echoes Songs from the Second Floor in consisting of a series of tenuously linked sketches set in a slightly surreal northern European city populated by wan grey-blue citizens blighted by loneliness, boredom, fear, anxiety, climate change, alcoholism, and nightmares about the apocalypse. Andersson is a genuine one-off, and to be treasured, not least for the precision of his pacing and his studio-shot compositions, which together contrive to make the very bleakest of scenarios at once affecting and hilarious.” — Geoff Andrew, Time Out