The Hunt (2012)

A few years ago, I discovered that my Grade Six teacher had been convicted of sexual misconduct with a student. It was a world-shattering surprise, like my insides had collapsed into nothingness. That moment of immeasurable shock occurs many times across the course of The Hunt, as kindergarten teacher Lucas (Mads Mikkelsen) is accused of inappropriate behaviour towards a young girl in his care. More accusations accumulate, and Lucas’s life is thrown into turmoil as the small Danish community turns vehemently against him.

Mads Mikkelsen in Jagten aka The Hunt (2012)

For much of the film, it is unclear whether we’re watching a modern take on The Trial, an innocent man’s life destroyed by accusations he cannot defend himself against, or if the film is gradually developing our sympathy for an irredeemable monster. That ambiguity lends The Hunt unique power; it’s a confronting film, both for its subject matter and the difficult questions it poses. If you’re in Lucas’s shoes, how can you possibly defend yourself? Is it fair for one man’s life to be ruined by an unsubstantiated allegation? But how can you not harshly judge someone accused of such a thing? To its credit, The Hunt understands that there is no easy answer to these questions.

Rating: 163/200

3 thoughts on “The Hunt (2012)

  1. Great review. I agree that ambiguity really benefited this film. It raised questions it didn’t know how to answer, because how CAN you answer them? Really quite maddening.

    • It’s really the kind of film where a lack of ambiguity – more concrete answers, a clear perspective – would have hurt the film, over-simplifying what is impossibly complex. I can see it being a frustrating film in many ways, but that reflects what these circumstances must be like in reality. Thanks for the comment!

  2. Pingback: The Top 20 Films of 2013 | ccpopculture

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s