Headhunters stars Aksel Hennie as Roger Brown, a man who, by day, is a headhunter, seeking only the very best man for the top jobs and builds people’s reputations, while by night, breaks into rich people’s houses and steals expensive artworks, replacing them with forgeries, and he says even those which aren’t the greatest won’t get discovered for weeks.
His other trick is not to take any longer than ten minutes in each house, as every additional minute spent there, is an additional minute in which he could be spotted.
Roger is also a very confident man with a very beautiful, blonde wife, Diana (Synnøve Macody Lund), who’s taller than him. Roger is 5’6, and is not sure whether he wishes he was taller, but when it comes to the woman in his life, he knows he’s clearly punching above his weight. He knows she likes the finer things, so he steals to fund his expensive lifestyle, buying her everything she wants and they live in a house worth 30 million kroner (around £3.1m), which he doesn’t like, but it keeps her happy.
What would also makes her happy is for him to give her a child, but this isn’t what he wants at all. In fact, at times he shows he can be rather selfish by the fact he plays away from home with other women, currently in the form of Lotte (Julie Ølgaard).
Roger also tells us, early on, that what he does will only end in one of two ways – either he’ll come across an artwork which will make him so rich that it will give him the reason to stop doing what he does, or… he’ll get caught… And then along comes an artwork belonging to GPS technology guru Clas Gleve (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), which is worth around 100m kroner.
In order to get it, as always, he’ll enlist the help of best friend Ove Kjikerud (Eivind Sander), who he installed at a security firm to let him in, then delete the logs to show he was ever there.
Now, from that, it may not sound like a film worthy of 100 minutes of your time, but the problem I have with reviewing it is that Headhunters has got twists and turns that you don’t see coming, none of which I can describe here.
Just take it from me that we have a new engaging star in Aksel Hennie. Well, I say new, but he’s been making films for over 10 years. However, what I did notice instantly is that he is the spitting image of a young Christopher Walken, so if they ever need someone to star in a film about his life, Aksel is the man. Similarly, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, as Clas Greve, looks similar to Aaron Eckhart.
Also, I know we’ve been blessed with great foreign drama on TV recently, my favourites being Braquo and The Bridge so you’re thinking the bubble has to burst at some point. Well, it hasn’t with this. This is 100 minutes of great acting, writing and directing, and while I hadn’t heard of Jo Nesbø before this,
I recently also saw the trailer for Jackpot, given a UK cinema release on August 10th, and looks like another triumph.
As I type, there are elements about it which remind me of another film, an American one, but for the life of me I can’t think which one.
Go to page 2 for a look at the presentation and extras.
Reviewer of movies, videogames and music since 1994. Aortic valve operation survivor from the same year. Running DVDfever.co.uk since 2000. Nobel Peace Prize winner 2021.