Open Hearts

Rated 4.0 An auto-pedestrian accident in Denmark initiates a chain reaction of events that forever changes the lives of one couple and threatens to rip apart a suburban family. Cæcilie (Sonja Richter) barely has time to bask in the sweetness of a nuptial proposal when her fiancé is hit by a car and paralyzed from a crushed spine. Cæcilie is consoled at the hospital by a doctor (Mads Mikkelsen) whose wife was driving the vehicle, and their relationship escalates into an affair that barrels toward and through confrontations between all four main characters like a runaway train. Filmmaker Susanne Bier adopted the digital video “rules” of the Dogme 95 manifesto (only the use of available light, sound and props is embraced) for this introspective drama. The cheap, non-film look and melodramatic coincidence at the beginning of the story prove to be minor distractions in a snugly compressed tale about the fragility of our physical and emotional health.