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Review: ‘The 100-Year-Old Man’ has more fun than his younger counterparts Special

By Sarah Gopaul     May 9, 2015 in Entertainment
‘The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared’ is darkly humoured Swedish picture about a man for whom life always seems to work out.
When many people think of getting older, they equate it with life slowing down. Days of spontaneous escapades fade away, becoming nothing but memories shared with those who will listen. There have been a number of centenarians in the news recently, celebrating their 100-plus birthdays and divulging the secrets to long life. But none of them appear ready to go on a global adventure at a moment’s notice. However, The 100-Year-Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared isn’t your average senior.
After executing an act of revenge involving explosives, Allan Karlsson (Robert Gustafsson) finds himself in a nursing home on the day of his 100th birthday. Refusing to suffer the indignity of losing his cherished freedom, Allan escapes out the window and heads to the nearest bus station. In a life filled with incredible coincidences and unbelievable circumstances, he suddenly finds himself in the middle of nowhere with a suitcase packed with $50 million. The misunderstanding results in a group of new friends who help Allan evade the biker gang determined to recover their money through a series of fantastic mishaps.
This movie is similar to Forrest Gump, but with far more of comedic flair. Throughout Allan’s venture, he recalls moments in his life that coincide with significant events in history, including a major contribution to the Manhattan Project, getting drunk with Harry S. Truman, being thrown in a Russian gulag and inadvertently causing the demise of Joseph Stalin. In spite of how far-fetched these tales are, they’re all very amusing and add ample colour to an already entertaining story.
Gustafsson spent hours in make-up, sometimes beginning application at 2 a.m., to double his age. And although it’s not as undetectable as Johnny Knoxville’s prosthetics in Bad Grandpa, it’s still relatively convincing. Allan is not the stereotypical curmudgeonly old man depicted in most movies. He’s rather kind and matter-of-fact, taking life’s surprises in stride as a man with decades of experience of things working out would be ought to do. The irony is that they do just that in the most absurd manner possible in most cases.
Nordic comedies are somewhat dark generally, but always funny. With bodies piling up due to accidental deaths and the constant need to transport an elephant while running for their lives, humour is almost more difficult to avoid than integrate. But that’s this film’s charm – it’s not trying to be amusing, it simply is.
Director: Felix Herngren
Starring: Robert Gustafsson, Iwar Wiklander and David Wiberg
More about The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window an, Robert Gustafsson, Felix Herngren, Comedy, Movie
 
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