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Movie review: 'Headhunters' a cool Norwegian thriller

Published June 1, 2012 2:22 pm

This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.

The Norwegian thriller "Headhunters" is brimming with cool plot twists and an off-putting dose of gallows humor.

Roger Brown (Aksel Hennie) is a corporate headhunter who's overloaded in debt — buying lavish stuff for his trophy wife, Diana (Synnøve Macody Lund), of whom he feels unworthy because he's 5-foot-6 — so he augments his income by stealing high-quality art from his CEO clients.

The scam runs into trouble when he encounters Clas Greve ("Game of Thrones" baddie Nikolaj Coster-Waldau), a Danish high-tech entrepreneur who sets off Roger's alarm bells both as a fine CEO candidate and for his priceless Rubens. Clas turns out to be one guy you don't mess with, and soon Roger is on the run for his life.

Director Morten Tyldum moves the story along at a brisk pace, as the cat-and-mouse game between Clas and Roger turns weirdly comical and downright loopy.

Hennie is so engaging and intense that he has you rooting for Roger in spite of his bad behavior. He'll be a tough act to follow for whoever is cast in the inevitable Hollywood remake (scheduled for 2014).

movies@sltrib.com; nowsaltlake.com/movies —

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'Headhunters'

Opens Friday, June 1, at the Broadway Centre Cinemas; rated R for bloody violence including some grisly images, strong sexual content and nudity; in Norwegian with subtitles; 105 minutes. For more movie reviews, visit nowsaltlake.com/movies.