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Next Door [Import]

Kristoffer Joner , Cecilie A. Mosli , Pål Sletaune    Unrated   DVD
3.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
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3.0 out of 5 stars Next Door Nov. 3 2012
Format:DVD|Verified Purchase
This movie was not quite as good as I had hoped, however it was watchable and I will watch it again in a year or so. If I had not purchased it, but rented it instead, I would probably not rent it again. I was very disappointed that the whole thing was not real!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars How many Norwegian horror films have you seen? March 12 2008
By Jenny J.J.I. TOP 500 REVIEWER
Format:DVD
Well for me this is my first and I enjoyed it very much thanks to my Amazonian friends who had already seen this and recommended it to me. As beautiful as the direction and cinematography is this story revolves around the office employees John (Kristopher Joner), whose girlfriend Ingrid (Anna Bache-Wig) is recently separated from him. This has its already fragile psyche another missed kick. His life still revolves entirely to the woman who left him; withdrawn, he now lives alone on the top floor of a tenement house. His tidy, clean, even sterile housing is a desperate held upright on the contrast of dark labyrinth, which is its soul. Suddenly he meets two mysterious neighbors, which he has never noticed, even though they live right next door. When visiting the two women Anne (Cecilie A. Mosli) and Kim (Julia Schacht), a strange interest in having him appear, he loses more and more in the long, winding corridors of his comfortable environment to a sinking nightmare of sex and violence.

This movie's does have one of the most violent and vile consensual sex scene in movie history, containing a beating that only leads to more arousal. It's pretty ailing stuff, and you'll be just as disturbed as John is when he looks in the mirror afterwards, and sees himself covered in his mishap.... that's not all his. It really is an unsettling moment, and probably the defining one of the film. Julia Schacht and Ceclie Mosli did a great job in their roles even though I don't know much about them.. The lead character of John is not only convincing in the role, but you find yourself as a viewer putting yourself in his shoes.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 3.9 out of 5 stars  24 reviews
28 of 32 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Intriguing Norwegian psychological thriller... Fine DVD from TLA Nov. 18 2006
By dooby - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
Naboer (Neighbor - aka Next Door) is an intriguing but flawed Norwegian psychological thriller. The film opens with John (Kristoffer Joner) breaking up with his live-in girlfriend Ingrid (Anna Bache-Wiig). She has gotten fed up with his secret penchant for beating her up. John is a closet sadist. After Ingrid leaves, John is invited to the adjoining apartment. His neighbors are a creepy pair of beautiful, sexy young women. They know of his problems with his girlfriend, his love for SM games and they are strangely attracted to him. The younger woman, Kim (Julia Schacht), enjoys being slapped and punched in the face as foreplay. The older, Anne (Cecilie A. Mosli), enjoys watching. Are the women, Kim and Anne, mentally unbalanced? Or is John going out of his mind?

It begins very well and there is a very gripping first half but director Pål Sletaune reveals his hand far too soon. By the midway point we are already fairly certain how the story will end. And midway here means half-hour because this entire movie lasts for just 75-minutes. After that it is just waiting for the denouement and seeing how well Sletaune wraps things up. Fortunately he does a very good job. I liked the creepy final scene and I thought the movie worked well as a whole. I just wished he had not given away the ending so quickly. It could have been truly outstanding if the mystery had been kept right to the end. Still, it's well worth watching.

There is some nudity and a small amount of sex but some viewers may be put off by the graphic violence where John repeatedly beats and punches Kim in the face until she is all bloodied before having sex with her. I'm OK with S&M but this was somewhat beyond my cup of tea.

TLA provides a very good transfer of the film in its OAR of 2.35:1 (Anamorphic). The picture is clean and sharp. Colors are strong and natural though predominantly gloomy. Sound is in the original Norwegian 5.1 DD Surround or a 2.0 Stereo remix. Optional English subtitles are provided. Extras include the 15-minute "Behind the Scene" featurette and the 4-minute "Meet the People Next Door" which has interviews with Julia Schacht and Cecilie A. Mosli. There is also a 5-minute segment "Rooms of the Mind" discussing the setup of the rooms used in the shoot and a series of trailers including the original "Naboer" trailer. Deserves at least a rental, even if you're not into foreign movies.
12 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Norwegian "Rooms of the Mind"... Feb. 17 2008
By Woopak - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
I've seen a fair share of excellent psychological thrillers; The Korean hit "Spider Forest", David Lynch's "Mulholland Drive" and the mind-bending Japanese cult hit "Strange Circus". "NEXT DOOR" is a Norwegian film that follows the same vein as the aforementioned films. When I think of a so-called "psychological" thriller, I rather believe it refers to the screenplay being focused on the main character who is placed in a very bizarre and frightening situation that may cause him to question the thin line between fantasy and reality. Fellow amazon reviewer C. Christopher Blacksheare peaked my interest on this film and I found it very note-worthy of my time.

John (Kristopher Joner) is a nice young man who had recently broken up with his girlfriend; Ingrid (Anna Bache-Wig). It is fairly obvious from the get-go that the relationship didn't end on good terms. John wants to patch things up but Ingrid just wants to get her stuff and leave. She goes as far as suggesting to John that her new boyfriend Ake is waiting downstairs.
The next day, John encounters two very attractive neighbors; Anne (Cecilie A. Mosli) and Kim (Julia Schacht). The two young women behave very peculiar. Not long after, John finds himself locked in the maze-like apartment next door with Kim who exhibits some violent, very sexual and disturbing advances on him.

It would be rather unfair to give you any more hints of the film's proceedings because its plot hinges on the screenplay itself. The style is reminiscent of "Pulp Fiction" and writer/director Pal Sletaune does an incredible job in mixing up timeline in the structure of the film. The film's biggest strength is its awesome structure. At first glance, I thought that the main premise is the relationship between John and Kim, and then John and Anne; the film jumps around to different conversations that give subtle clues and details (example: Anne's undergarment). However, the film's premise is actually the reason for John and Ingrid's break up and the factors surrounding both before and after timetables.

However, that's all similarities to "Pulp Fiction" end. "Next Door" is a study of a man's inner psyche. A man's inner subconscious is struggling to wake the consciousness. The film is a lot about obsession and deliverance, and eventual descent into madness and rise back to reality. There are quite a few graphic images of violent sexual behavior that may turn off a lot of viewers. The director does an excellent job in the film's pacing; it starts off a little slow then when you witness the violence, you will realize that the film isn't a sappy psychological mind-bender. The wierdness and the occasional graphic images escalate from that point on.

"NEXT DOOR" does a lot of things right, but it is not perfect. There are two flaws that may hamper the film. 1) It is a bit too short, it is about 78 minutes long including credits and 2) the shock-ending is a little predictable. I figured out the film's ending 15 minutes into the film. Despite these minor flaws, I did realize that the film isn't so much as a mystery, but rather how and when the "hidden" if subtle clues are about. It is more a character study of John and his "sexual" state of mind. There is quite a few details that the average movie-watcher may miss, but the director does a very excellent job in putting the clues and details all together.

Nevertheless, I found "Next Door" a well-made film. It does contain certain darkness to it that I was thoroughly pleased that the director had the guts to follow through with the shocking images. The film is very successful in applying a sinister and atmospheric mood to it. It may have played its hand a tad early but the film is definitely a nice piece of challenging cinema.

RECOMMENDED! To people who fancy mind-benders...[4 Stars]
11 of 14 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars How many Norwegian horror films have you seen? March 3 2008
By Jenny J.J.I. - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
Well for me this is my first and I enjoyed it very much thanks to my Amazonian friends who had already seen this and recommended it to me. As beautiful as the direction and cinematography is this story revolves around the office employees John (Kristopher Joner), whose girlfriend Ingrid (Anna Bache-Wig) is recently separated from him. This has its already fragile psyche another missed kick. His life still revolves entirely to the woman who left him; withdrawn, he now lives alone on the top floor of a tenement house. His tidy, clean, even sterile housing is a desperate held upright on the contrast of dark labyrinth, which is its soul. Suddenly he meets two mysterious neighbors, which he has never noticed, even though they live right next door. When visiting the two women Anne (Cecilie A. Mosli) and Kim (Julia Schacht), a strange interest in having him appear, he loses more and more in the long, winding corridors of his comfortable environment to a sinking nightmare of sex and violence.

This movie's does have one of the most violent and vile consensual sex scene in movie history, containing a beating that only leads to more arousal. It's pretty ailing stuff, and you'll be just as disturbed as John is when he looks in the mirror afterwards, and sees himself covered in his mishap.... that's not all his. It really is an unsettling moment, and probably the defining one of the film. Julia Schacht and Ceclie Mosli did a great job in their roles even though I don't know much about them.. The lead character of John is not only convincing in the role, but you find yourself as a viewer putting yourself in his shoes. I was very sympathetic with John throughout this film and pretty much had no feelings towards Kim/Anne's except for their maze-like apartment which I fine really cool and something I like to invest in.

Other reviewers had mention the pacing of this film and that too is my only problem with it. Though it's over 70 minutes but somehow manages to drag. Sure, mood permeates most of it, but it doesn't help once you realize that nothing much happens throughout the film. This could've been a great short film. Those who want to sit through it will ultimately be satisfied by the atmosphere, but it will be a little hard at points. The film ends on the interesting note, a nice, mind-bending twist that might be somewhat obvious but is no less effective.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Have your shrink on speed dial Feb. 5 2008
By C. Christopher Blackshere - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
This movie will mess with your head! Psychosexulogical? See I'm making up words now. This is an abrasive, erotic, trippy plunge into creepy madness.
Next Door can be confusing as it jumps around quite a bit. But don't worry, it doesn't take long for everything to play out. It's a great thriller that juggles loneliness and madness. In the same vein as Repulsion, with a little Psycho, Memento, and Basic Instinct mixed in.
Big thanks to Berith for throwing this one out there. Highly recommended, just have a bottle of Xanax or Zoloft handy, heh-heh...
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A rationalizing delusion Nov. 29 2009
By PsyRC - Published on Amazon.com
Format:DVD
Spoilers lie herein!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wow.. a rather short film. Quite simply put, I did find it a strong message on how violence somehow needs to be justified by the psyche through re-creating the experience with a more palatable guise. In other words, even psychosis needs to find its own safe haven. People commit absolutely abominable acts, but this indeed stems from an impulse that, at some point, makes perfect sense to them. But sometimes even the rawness of the act per se is intolerable and needs to be masked as something else. In the case of this film (stop reading if you haven't seen it yet), he murdered his ex-girlfriend and her new boyfriend. The acts were brutal, but his consciousness splintered (to a certain degree) in order to create a delusion that would not be as shocking to his fragile mind.. in the case of the sexual violence, it was justified by the overt sexual advances of Kim and her repeated beating of John; in this light, he had "permission" to hit back, thereby allowing justification of what ensued. People kill when their own survival is threatened... John saw his own definition of self in peril... that is, a relationship with a woman who satisfied his perverse whims (creating outlandish tales of past sexual experiences).. when she threatened to leave him, his life as he knew it was jeopardized, and he needed to kill off the double threat (Ingrid and Ake).. as it is, this perverse view of self is what kept his psychosis encapsulated and, when it was shattered, he lost it. I loved the concept of the film, it drew me in less than I had hoped. I enjoyed the performance of Kristoffer Joner very much, but felt that some of the others' came off as strained. Very enjoyable nonetheless.. I did feel a twinge of sympathy for John.. his life will be one of seclusion till the end of his days.
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