Another Round

Another Round ★★★★½

Not since Billy Wilder's The Lost Weekend has a film so adeptly captured the experience of alcoholism, showing the creative aspects of the substance not as mutually exclusive with its destructive tendencies, and its destructive side not silencing its positive effects. Tactfully constructed, the film shows both sides of the coin. The rise and fall, the illumination and the curse, the divine drunkenness and the deadly hangover. Without judgment but with a narrative that allows us to evaluate all this, Vinterberg's understands that addiction is a journey without absolutes, and perhaps more importantly, that alcoholism is not the problem, rather a wrongful and harmful solution. It doesn't present those who suffer as being particularly depraved, stupid, or weak, but as people searching for a way out of a crisis, despondent resignation masquerading as acquiescence. The final 10 minutes are perhaps the strongest of any film this year, a fantastic array of exuberance that is simultaneously cathartic and perpetually haunting.

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