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Mænd & høns (2015)

Not Rated | | Comedy, Drama, Mystery | 5 February 2015 (Denmark)
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Two outcast brothers, through getting to know their unknown family, discover a horrible truth about themselves and their relatives.
9 wins & 7 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Credited cast:
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Rest of cast listed alphabetically:
Stine Engberg Andersen ...
Epilog pige I
Rikke Louise Andersson ...
Sara
Ulla Asbjørn-Damsted ...
Gæst
Thor Bisbjerg ...
Hvid kittel II
Valdemar Bemmann Bredning ...
Boy I
Lisbet Dahl ...
Susan
Johnny Didriksen ...
Hvid kittel V
Matti Ehlers ...
Dreng børnehaven
Daniel Engstrup ...
Hvid kittel I
Jens Fitzau ...
Tjener I
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Storyline

Gabriel and Elias are two very different brothers. Gabriel is a worn down university professor and Elias is a man whose only concern is women and trivial knowledge. During a lecture Gabriel receives a phone call. Their father is dead. Things take a turn when the brothers learn through a videotape recorded by their now late father, that he in fact wasn't their biological father. Gabriel and Elias discover that their biological father lives on the island Ork. They set out to the island and here they meet their real family. The brothers' first meeting with the family doesn't go as expected. Gabriel and Elias are stranded in the marshland of Ork. Here they meet the mayor of Ork and his daughter Ellen, a neurotic woman who hates her life, herself, her father and the island. Surrounded by abnormal people, Gabriel and Elias discover the truth about themselves and their relatives. A truth that while paralyzing them also sets them free. Written by Anders Thomas Jensen

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Man vælger ikke selv sin familie (You don't choose your own family)


Certificate:

Not Rated | See all certifications »
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Details

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Release Date:

5 February 2015 (Denmark)  »

Also Known As:

Men & Chicken  »

Filming Locations:

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Box Office

Opening Weekend:

$2,654 (USA) (24 April 2016)

Gross:

$30,127 (USA) (26 June 2016)
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Company Credits

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(HD)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The old sanatorium from the movie was part of the sanatorium in Beelitz, near Berlin, Germany. The complex consists of 60 buildings built between 1898 and 1930. When the sanatorium was uses as a military hospital in WWI, Adolf Hitler was among the wounded. After WWII, it was used as a military hospital by the soviet union until 1994. Since they passed on any modernization the complex is very popular among movie companies for history pieces. Parts of The Pianist (2002) and Valkyrie (2008) where shot in the area. See more »

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User Reviews

 
TIFF 2015 -- Men & Chicken (Mænd & høns): Actually worth the surprising story
17 September 2015 | by (Toronto, Canada) – See all my reviews

Anders Thomas Jensen has been known for spawning very creative stories, ones that are arguably designed for the absurd. Even if this is the case, there's an underlying genius to what he has created with 'Men and Chicken' (Mænd & høns). Whatever the idea might have been, it came together in the end perfectly.

The story revolves around two brothers from Denmark who suffer from grotesque appearances and other mental issues that hinder them on a daily basis. While one brother, Gabriel, is a University professor who can't maintain a relationship, the other is the loose-cannon, Elias (phenomenally played by Mads Mikkelsen), who also has relationship issues and can't seem to go more than an hour without having to gratify himself.

The brothers learn from their now deceased father that he was not their biological father, that the real one is a Geneticist who specializes in Stem Cell Research, fathered both men with different women, and that he resides on a remote island. While this excites Gabriel at first due to his assumptions that him and Elias could not be related, they embark on a journey that reveals their true family history. They find out that they have three other half-brothers who live on the remote island, and surprise surprise, they have similar features. While Elias is able to, say, communicate with the loners of the island in far less civilized methods, Gabriel attempts to help improve their ways of problem solving by talking and not by hilarious slapstick comedy beatings.

It seems as if the story gets its inspiration from Kafka's 'The Metamorphisis'. So very "Kafka-esque" ('Mission Hill' reference). I'll let that idea sit with you.

The film breaks the barriers of creativity in storytelling from both a comedic and dramatic perspective. It opens and closes as if reading a kids storybook, the musical score has a certain creepy feel to it, and the makeup and design all around was made to give the characters a worn down and dirty look that couldn't have possibly been any better.

What was really fantastic about the film was despite the absurdity, the story really gelled into something of substance and quality. It told us that aren't able to choose our family, and that being different is the best thing in the world.

The film ends on the note that every life -- be it creature or human, ugly or pretty, fat or skinny — is truly a small miracle. Things happen that are out of your control, and when you learn about what who you really are, it is possible to find comfort and acceptance.

"For the very simple reason that life is life, and that the alternative is not preferable."


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