🇩🇰 Summer of ‘92 🇩🇰
SUMMER OF ‘92 (2015) aka Sommeren ‘92 is a Danish biographical, drama, comedy, sport film. Netflix 1hr 34min Cert Mature
Ulrich Thomsen as Richard Møller Nielsen
Henning Jensen as Kaj Johansen
Mikkel Boe Følsgaard as Kim Vilfort
Cyron Melville as Brian Laudrup
Esben Smed as John ‘Faxe’ Jensen
Gustav Dyekjær Giese as Peter Schmeichel
Jon Lange as Kim Christofte
Allan Hyde as Flemming Povlsen
Johannes Lassen as Kent Nielsen
Morten Vang as Henrik Andersen
Julie Zangenberg as Annette Jensen
Birgitte Hjort Sørensen as Minna Vilfort
Director: Kasper Barfoed
Cinematographer: Marcel Zyskind
Writers: Anders Frithiof August & Kasper Barfoed
Editor: Benjamin Binderup & Anders Albjerg Kristiansen
Costume: Katja Watkins
“When a quirk of fate kicks the Danish football team into the European Championships final, the coach must whip his unprepared squad into shape.”
The film is based on the real events surrounding the 1992 UEFA European Football Championship, the team members and the coach, Richard Møller Nielsen.
Firstly, in the spirit of full disclosure I am NOT a massive football (soccer) fan but this did not spoil my enjoyment of this film about the ‘beautiful game’. Knowing that Summer of ‘92 is biographical makes a big difference when viewing, I think.
There are comedic parts in this film (the mini golf for example) but for me this works best as a drama about life seen through the lens of a football team and its manager, which is also sometimes funny. Seeing the fight that Richard Møller Nielsen (Thomsen) had to even secure the role of coach and then the hinderances placed in his way when trying to create a team was inspiring. How he takes onboard the statement from a friend that he is a “great coach but a terrible leader” and actively does something about that weakness.
The backstory of Kim Vilfort, his wife and daughter is both deeply affecting and inspirational. The scene where Nielsen watches Brian Laudrup practicing on his own, the skills and later the special pep talk he gives this talented player. The casting in this film is amazing!
What can you take away from this movie? If you are into sports there is a lot about what being a good coach really is. Aside from sport alone there is much about egos, self-sacrifice and loyalty, how the underdog can win, that a team is a machine in which everyone plays their part.
The editing is great in this movie, especially the cuts between original and new footage. This works really well, notably towards the end of the film where the focus shifts to the real coach and players. (See photo bottom left of montage which is of Nielsen himself).
The costuming is perfect for the era and is so well researched both the kits worn and the everyday clothing. It’s all so ‘90s!
My final thoughts: true stories make my eyes leak; knee injuries are always excruciating to watch; never give up and, corny though it may be, “There is no I in team”. Oh and do not let your husband rip your kitchen out so you have to cook everything on the barbecue!
Ulrich Thomsen won the Robert Award for Best Actor 2016 for his role Summer of ‘92. The film also received 16 other award nominations at the Robert, Bodil and Zulu Awards.
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