The essential guide to Oslo, August 31st by Joachim Trier
Seventh Row has been following Joachim Trier’s career since Oslo, August 31st (2011). We have the most in-depth coverage of all of his films out there.
Oslo, August 31st is the second entry in Joachim Trier’s Oslo Trilogy. It was Seventh Row’s #1 film of the 2010s, and we’ve written extensively about the film. We also named Anders Danielsen Lie’s performance in the film one of the 50 best of the decade. An even deeper discussion of the film will appear in our forthcoming ebook Existential detours.
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About the film
Oslo, August 31st was loosely adapted from the novel Le feu follet. The film follows a day in the life of recovering heroin addict Anders (Anders Danielsen Lie). He leaves the rehab centre where he’s been living for a job interview in the city. Along the way, he meets up with friends, and contemplates whether he wants to keep living or end his life. It was Seventh Row’s #1 film of the 2010s.
This film put Trier on the international film scene in a major way after premiering at the Cannes Film Festival. Many critics cite it as one of the best films of the 21st century.
In her essay, Heeney explains, “Oslo, August 31st is like a feature-length expansion of the secondary protagonist in Reprise, Philip (Anders Danielsen Lie). Philip was a brilliant writer who lost his mind when he achieved success, becoming suicidal. Reprise focused on the consequences of Philip’s artistic ambition. Oslo, August 31st told the story of a similarly talented writer, Anders (again played by Lie). But Oslolooked at how he dealt with his depression and suicidal feelings after destroying his career.”
Read our excerpted interviews and essays on Oslo, August 31st
To celebrate the 10th anniversary of Oslo, August 31st in 2021, we published three interviews on the film. We talked to director Joachim Trier, Lead actor Anders Danielsen Lie, and production designer Jørgen Stangebye Larsen.
These are all excerpts of longer discussions which will appear in our forthcoming ebook on Joachim Trier. The book is called Existential detours: Joachim Trier’s cinema of indecisions and revisions.
You can pre-order Existential detours here. On Oslo, August 31st specifically, features extended versions of each of the interviews below. It also includes an in-depth interview with co-writer Eskil Vogt. The book will also include in-depth analyses of several scenes from Oslo, August 31st.
Listen to the audio commentary on Oslo, August 31st
In the audio commentary, we discuss how the film fits into the Oslo trilogy. We discuss Trier’s visual motifs, his directorial trademarks, and the complex psychology of the characters created in the film. We also discuss how the film expands on themes explored in Trier’s previous film, Reprise (2007).
“I’m not sure Trier could have made these audio commentaries as well.” – Hazel Shaw
Listen to full-length audio commentaries on Joachim Trier’s first four feature films, including Oslo, August 31st, by the people who have written the book on his work.
Pre-order the book on all of Joachim Trier’s films
The first full-length book on Joachim Trier’s movies
An essential companion to Oscar Nominee The Worst Person in the World and Joachim Trier’s work. The book is full of interviews and critical insights that demystify Trier’s creative process. It also features an in-depth look at the making of Oslo, August 31st.
*The book is available as an ebook. Epub and PDF files of the book will be delivered to you when it is released in late 2022.
Listen to the podcast on the film
Ep. 107: Are Men OK? Masculinity, mental health, and addiction.
In December 2021, The Seventh Row Team recorded a podcast comparing Oslo, August 31st to the new film Another Round (2021) by Thomas Vinterberg. We discussed how the two films are a rare breed in their sensitive depiction of men’s emotional lives.
More resources on the film
Watch Joachim Trier give a Q&A on the film at EbertFest in 2013.
Watch Joachim Trier give a Q&A at the New Directors/New Films festival in 2012.