'Solitude' (TIFF review)
Living in the beautiful rural landscapes of Iceland, Gunnar is forced to move to the city and build a new life that's giving him a lot less solitude than what he's used to.
When the water starts to rise around Gunners old country home, the government forces him to sell his house before it will become unlivable. He gets a great price for it though. But the thing is, Gunner is not looking for money. Nor is he looking to move and having to leave behind his horses.
Though quite uncomfortable there, he buys a small home in the city. Surrounded by neighbors, a situation that's quite new to him.
And while not looking for any company, a young boy soon asks for his attention. With some reluctance Gunner complies, and they quickly become friends, of sorts.
'Solitude' is a subtle movie that, in its own quiet way, handles the problems society faces today. Changing landscapes because of global warming, forced migration, city vs. country life, and the unexpected relationships people frown upon.
Þröstur Leó Gunnarsson, looking like a slightly younger Tommy Lee Jones here, brilliantly displays Gunnar's shy idiosyncrasies and captivates the audience from start to finish.
It's a charming little film with some interesting subjects, without them being thrown in your face like other films would for shock. In the end, it could've used a bit more meat on the bone, but maybe it's also the beauty of its simplicity.
'Solitude' had its world premiere at #TIFF23 and will be released in Iceland later this month.