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Open Hearts

7.51 h 48 min200315
Romantic drama where a tragic accident brings two people together. Joachim (Nikolaj Lie Kaas) and Cecilie (Sonja Richter) are madly in love and plan to marry. Joachim is left paralyzed from the neck down following an accident. Marie (Paprika Steen), the woman responsible for the accident, asks her doctor husband, Niels (Mads Mikkelsen) to take care of Cecilie.
Susanne Bier
Sonja RichterPaprika SteenNikolaj Lie Kaas
None Available
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Rentals include 30 days to start watching this video and 48 hours to finish once started.
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Supporting actors
Mads Mikkelsen
Vibeke Windel����v
Icon Film Distribution
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Prime Video (streaming online video)
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4.0 out of 5 stars

46 global ratings

  1. 51% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 24% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 10% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 9% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 6% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United Kingdom

BrownPolarReviewed in the United Kingdom on 15 June 2015
5.0 out of 5 stars
BrownPolar Verdict
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Having lived long enough to know the truths life, I no longer believe in sexual love, because it is conditional, possessive and manipulative, as we should expect from a manifestation of lust and greed. However, seeing ’Open Hearts’ compelled me to think again about the female perspective of romance. For a good majority of women, a relationship is more meaningful and perhaps purer than an expression of mere sexual gratification. Being biologically nurturing in their nature, they tend to invest a lot more passion, devotion and commitment in love than the average man does. That commendable dedication is what makes a woman continue in a relationship and selflessly care for a partner even when he or she becomes severely ill or handicapped, instead of selfishly running away. ’Open Hearts’ dissects these themes as incisively as open heart surgery does, an unflinching probe into sexual love in the modern society, where estrangement is increasingly more common than reconciliation.

The story is told with stark realism, which makes the experience all the more potent. Unadorned sets captured in natural light with handheld, digital photography bring the performances into immediate and proximate focus, so that the viewer is intimately engrossed in the lives of the protagonists. The performances then are so real and believable that it is hard to imagine this is fiction, every characterisation being captivatingly impeccable. Mads Mikkelsen as Niels is just unforgettable, yet again proving what an exceptional actor he is. The intimacy of these perfectly rounded roles is further enhanced by grainy, Super 8 footage that periodically appears, depicting thoughts of a character in spite of the actual situation he or she is in. These insights also cleverly interrupt the austere realism of the movie like sparks in otherwise gloomy situations. Yet, the realism is inexorably adhered to elsewhere. For example, there is no score to the film, and where music appears, it is a tune played on a Walkman CD Player that Cæcilie carries with her. Similarly, the soundtrack is entirely recorded live on set. The film opens with saturated, thermal imagery, the significance of which only becomes clear as the tale concludes in the same style. This unusual device expands the focus of the story to include the wider world, conceivably to suggest that all of us, with red blood running through our veins, are as vulnerable and clueless as to sexual love as the protagonists of the movie have been.

Susanne Bier has reportedly acknowledged that ‘Open Hearts’ was made on the principles of Dogme Movement, but what interests me more is how she has nevertheless challenged those rules by incorporating her own interpretations of realism. While it feels somewhat dated now, the film remains a valid and socially relevant expose of romance from a refreshingly female perspective. However, it is a movie that should resonate better with younger audiences than with geriatrics like me!
5 people found this helpful
NLondonReviewed in the United Kingdom on 29 April 2018
3.0 out of 5 stars
I enjoyed it so so
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I enjoyed it so so. Watchable but slightly disappointing and tad unrealistic and underdeveloped story.. Just couldn't warm up to the characters, non them actually. quite flat in the end...
E. ThompsonReviewed in the United Kingdom on 04 September 2016
2.0 out of 5 stars
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Sadly not great, though the cast are really sincere and do what they can with a really overblown story and preposterous characters.
One person found this helpful
HelenReviewed in the United Kingdom on 29 May 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
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Mads is a heartbreaker at the best of times but in this film he is just sublime. You won't be disappointed.
TonyReviewed in the United Kingdom on 04 July 2015
4.0 out of 5 stars
Four Stars
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Nice film
Universally SpeakingReviewed in the United Kingdom on 10 October 2015
4.0 out of 5 stars
Another good film by Sonja Richter
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Another good film by Sonja Richter. The Danes do it so well. Mads is great in this film as always.
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