One week exclusive run

Q&A with Ruben Östlund on January 14

“I want to make the audience active and reflective,” Östlund has stated. He does just that with this controversial record, inspired by actual court cases, of five black teenagers harassing white and Asian youths through scams and role-playing. All violence is implied, but the graver implication (which inflamed critics on the home front) is that political correctness debilitates society, as “good people” stand by and do nothing for fear of being thought racist. Östlund, who won a Swedish Oscar for Best Director and a “Coup de coeur” prize at Cannes, imprisons his actors within a frame, not unlike our social mores freezing us in place. Unabashedly impolite, Play offers food for thought and fuel for fury.

New York Film Festival 2011
Cannes Film Festival 2011