Danish writer-director Susanne Bier (Brothers, After the Wedding) is rightly respected for her pointed ethical dramas, though sometimes they can be a little too pointed. That's pretty much the case with this 2010 feature, an Oscar winner for best foreign film: it contemplates the problem of evil and the limits of pacifism so baldly that I began to wonder if there would be a catechism afterward. The pivotal character is a compassionate doctor who divides his time between a small Danish town, where his son is trying to figure out how to handle a school bully, and an African refugee camp, whose inhabitants are being terrorized by a merciless warlord. Scenes involving the doctor's crumbling relationship with his wife appear to have been inserted mainly as a diversion from the diagrammatic premise.
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