The lone survivor of a fatal car crash, sullen teenager Ida (Sandra Guldberg Kampp) finds herself taken into care by her distant, estranged aunt Bodil (Sidse Babett Knudsen). Initially welcoming, Ida discovers that her of three grown-up sons (Joachim Fjelstrup, Elliott Crossett Hove and Besir Zeciri) each have a criminal role to perform to Bodil’s empire of influence. With violence and silence bound so closely to one another, it isn’t long before Ida has to choose how far she’s willing to go to be accepted as a new member of the family.
...an arresting drama that never gets to quite slap the climatic cuffs on.
Announcing the strong arrival of Sandra Guldberg Kampp as the palpably-withdrawn Ida, ‘Wildland’s’ tale of a displaced rose fallen amongst thorns is tense from its very first sentence. Starring the fantastically-veiled Sidse Babett Knudsen (from TV series’ ‘Borgen‘ and ‘Westworld) as Bodil, ‘Wildland’ is a family crime drama with much in common with feral antics of director David Michôd’s electrifying ‘Animal Kingdom‘. Identified as the weak link in an already fractured chain, it isn’t long before fate calls Ida’s loyalties are called into question.
However, where ‘Wildland’ differs from ‘Animal Kingdom‘ is in the engaging relationship between Ida and the doe-eyed Anna endearingly played by Carla Philip Røder. Trapped in a toxically dependent relationship with Bodil’s errant son David (Elliott Crosset Hove), Anna is both a threat to the dominant Bodil and a possibility of life beyond her grasp.
Trapping all of them with a final, shocking sequence of events, ‘Wildland / Kød & blod’ ultimately tries to its shift focus onto Anna and the regrettable choices that its survivors must and what it will cost them personally in the end.
Sadly shy of the de rigour 90 minutes you’d expect for a such a competent debut feature, ‘Wildland / Kød & blod’ is a film that sadly steps out all-too abruptly. Left without the breath to fully make the point that would have separated it further from David Michôd’s sibling of sorts, this is an arresting drama that never gets to quite slap the climatic cuffs on.