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“INTRIGO: DEAR AGNES” Death and Friends

 

 

Review by John Delia

A cagey mystery that has some odd twists, Intrigo: Dear Agnes is the second in a trilogy by director Daniel Alfredson. The film has some very good acting and directing that takes you into the interesting story involving lust, money and a strained friendship. The screenplay is not predicated on having seen the first in the series and plays out independently of any information from the first.

Forlorn due to her husband cheating on her, Henny (Gemma Chan) has had dreams of killing him while he sleeps. At the present it’s not to the point of actually doing the deed, but yet it has put her on a negative track. At a funeral of Erich Neuman-Hansen (Cal MacAninch) she watches as an old friend and the second wife of Erich, Agnes (Carla Juri) leaves the church after the service.

Agnes (Carla Juri) and Henny (Gemma Chan) in INGRIGO: DEAR AGNES from Lionsgate

At the office of the lawyer handling Erich’s will, there is a proviso that the estate will be split with half going to his two children Clara (Clemmie Dugdale) and Thomas Neuman-Hansen (Ed Cooper Clarke) and the other half to Agnes. Wanting to keep the house she has lived in with Erich, the two children offer to sell their share to it for a large sum of money. Not having the money, they give her a few months to settle or they will sell it from under her.

In a twist of fate, Henny and Agnes renew their friendship. But, it’s not without Henny wanting to help Agnes with a plan to solve both their problems. Director Daniel Alfredson who knows how to handle suspense and tense drama having brought two Swedish classics to the screen, the originals of The Girl Who Played with Fire and The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest. Following the set-up described above, Alfredson’s second film in the series Intrigo: Dear Agnes shows how cunning he can really be.

Agnes (Carla Juri) in INGRIGO: DEAR AGNES from Lionsgate

With fine acting by the whole cast and standouts by Gemma Chan and Carla Juri, he weaves a wicked story that’s loaded with surprises. It’s one of those films that comes around infrequently and yet reminds you of the Masters of Suspense like Alfred Hitchcock’s Marnie and Stephen King’s Delores Claiborne to name a few. But, that said this film works a bit offbeat and clever.

Intrigo: Dear Agnes has been rated R by the MPAA for some language, sexual content and violence. Now on VOD and Digital.

The Swedish word Intrigo translates to Intrigue in English. I’m not completely sure why they used the foreign word as part of the title, but the script is based on the three crime novels by Swedish Author Hakan Nesser. Intrigo: Death of an Author was released in theaters on January 17, 2020 and then on home video Blu-ray/DVD on March17, 2020. Intrigo: Samaria is also slated for release on VOD today.

FINAL ANALYSIS: A very good follow up to his first in the series of Intrigo. (3 out of 5 Stars)

Additional Film Information:
Cast: Gemma Chan, Carla Juri, Laurie Kynaston
Directed and co-written by: Daniel Alfredson
Genre: Crime, Drama, Mystery
MPAA Rating:  R for some language, sexual content and violence
Running Time: 1 hr. 40 min.
Opening Date: May 5, 2020
Distributed by: Lionsgate
Released in: VOD

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