Much like the name, this is an unexpected force of a film.
Force Majeure means an unforeseen set of circumstances that typically prevent someone from fulfilling a contract but its application is an original and thoroughly engrossing drama. It deals with the particular relationship dynamic between a married couple in light of a recent event and man, is this a tense conflict that is explored.
Why this dynamic is so great to watch is mainly because of how it’s fairly minimalistic. Apart from the opening scenes that introduce you to the said event, the film focuses on the couple specifically with some very well written dialogue. As they continue to converse and argue with each other, you become more and more engrossed in their scenario and it’s so tense to watch. Picture a situation of where you’d take Quentin Tarantino’s The Hateful Eight and mixed it into a sort of family drama like Krisha but is instead between two people. And you watch as their relationship slowly gets the biggest exposure of a potential flaw, one that none of them would have expected but brings up certain notions about their marriage.
It’s the concept of being presented with such an unforeseen event that smartly puts you in the questioning of what would you do if you were in that scenario. Force Majeure explores the consequences of one person’s reaction to the unpredictable but by doing so, it allows you to inquisitively think about your own moral ethics and fears that you might be harboring inside. Ones that you might not even be aware of because you’ve simply never been in such a situation so how on Earth are you going to know which way you’re going to react if it came to that. I’m speaking in a lot of general terms without revealing what the event of this film is because not knowing anything going into it will also put you on the spot and echo the same feeling for you that the characters are experiencing.
But like all films that use a minimalistic approach with only a few choices of settings used, the script’s believability lies in the performance of the dialogue. This is what Force Majeure does very well because every character is reacting in such a realistic way that it’s adding to the engrossing factor of this film. I loved the way both the husband and wife argued with each other since not only did I find what they were discussing inherently interesting given the event that’s caused their relationship to be in strife but also because I genuinely understood both sides of the arguments.
In a strange way, I felt like I was backing both of their reasons in their marital fight because the dialogue was written so well that each character had very reasonable motivations behind what they were saying. If I was acting like Judge Judy and attempted to decide who was right and who was wrong, I don’t think I could give you an answer. Instead, I’m rather focused on thinking how I would react and am just enthralled at the following discussions that arise out of it.
Force Majeure is truly the unexpected force of a film and it’s fairly unknown which I feel like is such a shame because of how great of a minimalistic drama it is. The tensions that it presents arise from such an original scenario and it’s one that you might have always been thinking about in the back of your mind but have never seen dealt with in a film. This is why I love Force Majeure because it not only makes you think about its subject matter but it comes at you in such refreshing way and one that is written in a perfect way. Watch it if you can and for those in the United States, it’s easily accessible by Netflix so now you’ve got no excuse to do so. See it.