Scandinavians. They’re an odd lot. Blame it on seeing the sun maybe two days a year, or, depending on where in Scandinavia you are, never seeing it set and having to dig your way out of the house every week or so, but those guys are a bit over the top. Remember Viking raids? The Thirty Year’s War? Ikea? It shows in their movies. Their detectives are more morose, their serial killers more ruthless (a hyperbaric chamber? Hannibal Lecter is green with envy), their Christmases more Krampusy. Even their comedies are a bit out there: The 100 Year Old Man Who Climbed Out the Window and Disappeared, Rare Exports (okay, okay, not really a comedy but weird enough to be in the neighborhood), and now, Men and Chicken.
Best elevator pitch for this movie: HG Wells meets Monty Python. A couple of brothers, Gabriel and Elias (played by David Dencik and Mads Mikkelson, both of them under severe attack by the make-up crew), discover that their Dad is not their Dad. Turns out their real father is an obscure scientist living on an even more obscure island, so they set out to find him and get some answers because, hoo boy, are these two guys messed up. Gabriel makes the oddest throat-and-nose clearings while Elias…guy needs to be shot with a tranquilizer dart. They find three half-brothers living in an old sanitarium and, hoo boy, are those guys messed up. Some of the subsequent insanity includes assault by taxidermy, an ill-conceived pre-school employment effort, and the worst attempt ever to pick up women.
And, hoo boy, is it hilarious. Over-the-top hilarious. Like Finland.