As the title and tag promise, this is very much structured as a sort of French new wave soap opera…in Danish.
- It is low budget.
- It is episodic, in a sort of forced way.
- It is full of heightened emotion and strange characters.
- It has unlikely and crazy antics.
- It even has a cat fight, of sorts.
But, while done in earnest, it manages to keep its tongue firmly in cheek as well.
More importantly, Soap also manages to delve into the psychology of gender identity versus gender preference, something very few movies or shows have ever really tried to present. Even Transparent mostly missed that train.
David Dencik (The Snowman) gives us a wonderful Veronica as an actor, though he is always just a bit too unshaven to be credible for me. I don’t know if that was a choice or mistake, but it was distracting. Opposite him Trine Dyrholm walks the complex line of woman attempting to understand herself and find happiness. She struggles and fails and flails, but somehow remains sympathetic even as she lashes out at those around her.
I can’t say this is a great film. It is, however, compelling in its way. And it is funny at times too. Directed by the multiple award-winning Pernille Fischer Christensen who also co-wrote it with Kim Fupz Aakeson (Perfect Sense), this odd comic-romance feels like a throw-back to the 70s, but somehow keeps its footing here in the present. It isn’t something you need to queue up immediately, but at some point, sure, it is an interesting evening loaded with a lot of recognized talent.