The Worst Person in the World has a slightly misleading title. It seemingly refers to a specific individual and, at least during the first act of this movie, that individual appears to be Julie (Renate Reinsve). When Julie tries to focus on someone or something, she consistently has one eye on the next focal point. She isn’t hard to please and she isn’t stubborn, but she has an issue with commitment that she isn’t even aware of. The transitions she experiences are told through occasional narration and early (literal) chapters in her life. The interest she takes in various men needs no narrative assistance.
However, The Worst Person in the World isn’t about an anti-hero but rather about a universal emotional affliction felt by those who have experienced regret or are too afraid to possibly face it. The conflicts experienced by Julie transcend the story and start becoming very relatable to the audience through a well-realized screenplay written by Eskil Vogt and director Joachim Trier (who previously collaborated in the same roles for Louder Than Bombs and Thelma), and sensational performances by Reinsve, Anders Danielsen Lie, and Herbert Nordrum. The latter actors play love interests of Julie, and the film takes time to develop them as well – a detour that is rarely seen in movies nowadays but is more than appreciated by the audience.
I don’t know how The Worst Person in the World was developed. This is a movie that feels as if it stems from very personal territories of love, heartbreak, humour, and pain. And, amazingly enough, it finds romance in remorse – earning its place as a contemporary classic on how to love others and yourself. To know more about it would spoil its magic. All I want to do is recommend it to others, and watch it on a loop.
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Addison Wylie: @AddisonWylie