Q&A with Nils Malmros

Malmros’s only all-out comedy is a whimsical fantasy about the making of his 1977 film Boys, in which the shoot becomes a sexual free-for-all while shy director Frederik gets lost in the erotic reveries he’s trying to capture on film. It’s a film about filmmaking and a portrait of Århus, the center of Malmros’s world. Århus by Night is something of a turning point—it’s Malmros’s first work not only inspired by his own experiences and observations but a reflection of his life in cinema. Yet it has a highly ambiguous relationship with what we might call factual truth. Frederik is not Malmros, even if the films he has made do bear a striking resemblance to those of Malmros. In its moods and tones, it’s a step away from the intimate poetics of his earlier work, moving toward a slightly folksier idiom befitting its trenchant look at a 1970s Denmark torn between a glibly superficial sense of permissiveness and a deep-seated suspicion of any real kind of bourgeois liberty.

Read more about the films of Nils Malmros over at Film Comment.