Actors helped develop characters and tirelessly workshopped and improvised scenes to create this unique, award-winning family drama
“Amidst the stylistic brouhaha, it’s easy to overlook the service Dogme has performed for the humble ensemble drama by reclaiming it from politicized polemicists and refocusing it on characters whose everyday emotions are under the microscope. Annette K. Olesen’s impeccably performed debut combines the domestic dysfunction of THE CELEBRATION with the geniality of ITALIAN FOR BEGINNERS.” - Empire Magazine
Although not a formally certified a Dogme 95 production, MINOR MISHAPS certainly plays by its rules, adheres to its philosophy and shows the spreading influence of the movement. The artifice is stripped away leaving a lean, character-driven narrative. This debut by director Annette K. Olesen also follows the “Mike Leigh workshopping” method where actors go away and research their character before doing solo improvisations for the director.
She first assembled her cast and then told each actor to bring to the table ideas that would fit the scenario, characters based on people they’d known in real life. Olesen and her screenwriting partner Kim Fupz Aakeson made the final selections and constructed the basic story framework. After months of improvisation, both in preparation and during shooting, Minor Mishaps was born.
The film debuted at the Berlin Film Festival and was nominated for the Golden Bear and Annette K. Olesen won the Blue Angel Award for the creative ensemble of the film.
The film begins with the untimely death of the matriarch of the Olsen family and then slowly expands to explore the lives of the entire family. Strong performances abound, but the film is anchored by Jorgen Kiil, the wry, workaholic patriarch and his awkward and sheltered youngest daughter Marianne (Maria Wurgler Rich).
**Note: this film was shot on DV, video quality is as the director intended.