Most people don’t prepare for escapades with their spouses by buying a hammer, hacksaw, tape, and rope – but Lars (Aksel Hennie) isn’t most people, and “The Trip, “directed by Tommy Wirkola, isn’t most movies. His initial premise is this: Lars has plans to murder his wife, Lisa (Noomi Rapace), while on vacation, but is thwarted when it turns out Lisa is preparing to get rid of him on the same trip. Unfortunately, while this concept promises a fun and agile thriller, “The Trip” descends too quickly into a youthful, nihilistic mess.
Lars and Lisa’s mutual bloodbath turns into a group affair when unexpected strangers, including escaped convicts Dave (Christian Rubeck), Roy (Andre Eriksen) and Petter (Atle Antonsen), coincidentally join the fray. . Each actor courageously tackles the violence and emotional turmoil that follows, and Rapace is especially excellent at juggling the two. The film reveals its many surprises through flashbacks, sharp editing and an absurd scenario clearly aimed at irreverence.
But “The Trip” upsets its own tenuous balance of obscurity and humor, grabbing tasteless material on genitals and poo, though its basic premise is much smarter – and perfectly delicious – on its own. Such naivety turns what might be a quick, casual movie into a chore. At the end of a long streak of attempted rape, I was dismayed to find that I was only halfway through its two hour duration.
“The Trip” is funny at times, but other films have dealt with the gleeful gore and psychological torture with a much more skillful twist. The film clearly pays homage to Michael Haneke’s “Funny Games”, a clever commentary on cinematic violence. He is doing himself no favors by inviting this comparison.
Unclassified. In Norwegian, with subtitles. Duration: 1 hour 53 minutes. Watch on Netflix.