I would recommend Ondskan to anyone who is interested in coming-of-age films. American cinema has always been expert at such portrayals, and it is good to see so accomplished an example out of Sweden. I liked especially the fact that the director never wavers as he unmasks the unwholesome face of an angst-ridden, violence-prone, socially intransigent Swedish society of the not so long ago . Set in the fifties, mostly at a posh boarding school for the upper-class, where the sixth-form boys, led by an effete Swedish aristocrat, go about enforcing their arbitrary and violent rules while the faculty turn a blind eye, this film cleverly avoids the hooks, punches and triumphs of the underdog come to grips with the jack-booted status quo via his fists alone by allowing him to prevail to justice through the implementation of Swedish law. There are enough fisticuffs along the way, however, to satisfy the blood-thirsty among you. Well-acted, good script, beautiful cinematographic moments.
Totally gripping, 17 August 2006
I was amazed at how excellent this film was. I just did not expect much and I was blown away. My first Mikael Hafstrom film was Derailed which also surprised me. It was not a great film but it was very good and much better than the general reviews that it garnered. It made me curious about Evil and I just cannot recommend this film enough. Andreas Wilson is terrific as the "title" character and the way his character develops is quite different from the way one might expect. You will be rooting for him to overcome the cruelty and evil that surrounds him throughout the film. If you enjoy coming of age tales do not miss this masterpiece. I look forward to Mr. Hafstroms future films. "1408" is up next and it sounds terrific.
One more thing, I just finished watching Saint Ralph and would highly recommend watching it as a double feature with "Evil". They really play well together. Was the above review useful to you? Fantastic!, 30 September 2003
This is a great film. Truly outstanding. The characters are real and the story, however farfetched, rings true to life. Particularly enjoyable is the internal fight that transforms Erik from an angry youth to a man. And who could forget Andears' handsome good looks?!? Watch out Hollywood! Better prepare for the Swedish invasion! If you have the opportunity to see this film, do. It's well worth your time and money.