A faithful adaptation of a beloved Swedish best-seller, “A Man Called Ove” centers on a curmudgeonly, isolated retiree who spends his days enforcing block association rules, visiting his wife’s grave and railing against the local bureaucrats and sales clerks who sell him inadequate equipment in his oft-interrupted efforts to hang and gas himself (not simultaneously).
He’s 59, recently made redundant by a pair of 30-something corporate types who present him with a spade as a parting present when he takes them up on their thinly-veiled offer of early retirement from the local train works – a job he inherits after his father is run down by a locomotive.
Despite his outer crustiness, Ove is not able to fend off a tried-and-true movie premise – that of the irascible Old Dude succumbing to the charms of youth and finding redemption in the company of others. When pregnant Parvaneh and her boisterous family moves into the terraced house opposite an unexpected friendship develops, with Ove bringing an engineers sense of order to chaotic lives.
OUR RECOMMENDATION: Well worth the time.
WHY WE LIKED IT: A lot of black humor and (we presume) Swedish irony with life lessons tossed in gently along the way. An interesting array of characters. Two Polish cats.
BEST LINE: “You drive an Audi. Four zeroes on the bonnet and a fifth behind the wheel.”
A Man Called Ove
Swedish. 1 hour 56 minutes.
Available on Vudu, Amazon Prime, Apple TV.