Martin (Ole Giæver) has planned a weekend away from his wife and his kid: just he on his own with his thought in the wilderness, hiking up a mountain, giving him space to reflect on his life and whether he actually wants to continue in that way or if he’d rather fuck the hiking store shopkeeper.
Mot Naturen is another of those films about the fragility of the male ego in a modern world – like Turist. But unlike most of these films, I did like Mot Naturen. Reduced to the bare essentials of one man and his inner monologue out in nature, it manages to feel more honest and less artificial than most of the films of its kind.
The film doesn’t exactly cover radical new ground with regards to its topic, even though it is a lot more (sexually) explicit than many other films. Martin thinks about sex, he gets a boner at a bad moment and then can’t get it up when he wants to. He masturbates and he watches porn. I found that directness rather refreshing, especially because – unless you’re really very repressed – you don’t censor yourself in your thoughts that much.
And that is what we get in the film: Martin’s thoughts in an almost incessant monologue. I usually don’t like voice-over narration that much, but in this case it really was an important part of the film (instead of pretend-lyrical musings and re-tellings of what we see on screen anyway) and it made Martin accessible as a character where otherwise he would have just seemed like a dick. [It’s not like he’s the most sympathetic character ever and he does have his dickish parts, but the look inside him manages to show his insecurities and his non-dickish parts as well.]
Since Ole Giæver directs, writes and stars in the film, it could have been easy for it to be biased in Martin’s favor. And while the film is with Martin the entire time, it manages to be with him at enough critical distance to allow for a more realistic picture. And Giæver’s performance does this justice as well.
The cinematography is excellent, too. Nevertheless, the film probably won’t become my favorite film, mostly due to the fact that I’m just not the target audience of it and I am not really concerned with that topic. But if you are, I’d recommend Mot Naturen much more than Turist.