Small Apartments (2012)

Franklin [watching two young girls with binoculars] : "This must be what Switzerland is like."

I watched Small Apartments because I loved Spun. Director Akerlund has impressed me ever since and I felt compelled to watch this.

Small Apartments focuses on a weird main character who is obsessed with Switzerland (sic!), wears nothing except white underwear, eats pickles, drinks soda and happens to have issues with his, just as eccentric  neighbors  It's a rapid movie and scenes follow one after the other, sometimes without apparent link and they might feel random but they create sort of an atmosphere. There are a few hilarious scenes or lines, but they don't exactly carry through the whole movie.

After Horsemen, which was a totally different genre, Akerlund seems to be back to the roots of Spun. You'll find the same content, the drugs, the convenient store, the cheap motel and apartments, the dog, the heavy metal references, the Sweden references, the car ready to break down... The bare minimum that seems to make up these people's lives. Everyone seems to have a big problem on their hands. The main character is neither good or bad, at times stupid, at times annoying, but the actor does a really good job with that. Spun was genius, but this lacks the extra-bit to the craziness that made Spun good, it doesn't seem to reach out to a second level. The music, which was a key element in Spun, doesn't stand out in this film. With everything going on during the entire film, when the end comes and there is somewhat of a peaceful moment, it's hard to actually follow what is exactly happening, so it doesn't have the full effect it could have had.

I liked: The cameos are plenty and always quite good (Swedes Dolph Lundgren and Peter Stormare in particular). The absurdity of most situations. The bright colors and contrasts. The Switzerland-Sweden references.

I disliked: Over-the-top. More focused on the style than the substance. Juno Temple in a role that compares to Brittany Murphy's in Spun. Was expecting more of the soundtrack.


If you enjoy rapid movies with neither a hero nor a anti-hero, then this is a good fit. Also, hardcore fans of Spun will enjoy the resemblance of a lot of the content. Otherwise, it's entertaining but quickly forgettable.


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