Many writers become well known in their country of origin, however, quite often, the fame does not extend beyond geographical borders. Many of these authors go through an arduous path to achieve some kind of social recognition, and, almost always, this happens after death. With the public’s growing interest in biographies, little by little some of these stories are becoming known by the general public in audiovisual format, and a new copy arrives this weekend for rent on demand on the main streaming platforms. streaming through the long danish’Or Covenant’.
Thorkild (Simon Bennebjerg) is a young poet who really wants to build a career in the literary world, so when he receives an invitation from the renowned writer Karen Blixen (Birthe Neumann) to go to her house to talk about her poetic work, he does not contain the animation and immediately accepts the invitation. Fascinated with the lifestyle of Mrs. Blixen and with all the possibilities that this bond can bring you, Thorkild starts to blindly dive into this lifestyle, without realizing the countless consequences that it can bring to his life with Grete (Nanna Skaarup Voss), your wife.
At nearly two hours long, ‘Or Covenant‘ has a premise of suspense, which carries the whole plot to the end: the story of such a pact made by the two writers, in which they both promise to remain faithful to each other no matter what. Although based on a true story (both authors actually existed), the film’s proposal sounds unrealistic, because who, in their right mind, would submit so freely to someone else’s control? But that’s what happens in ‘Or Covenant’: Karen promises to advance the career of Thorkild and make him an excellent writer, polishing his talent; on the other hand, he must obey it faithfully, even if he does not agree with its methods or with its proposals. Weird, huh?
Through the promise of some suspense – after all, the dominator/socially dominated relationship should cause situations of discomfort –, the script of Christian Thorpe based on his own memoir Thorkild Bjornvig doesn’t bring any tension throughout its one hundred and fifteen minutes. Every time it seems that the protagonist is going to shake and take back the reins of his own life, the film goes there and puts out the fire, leaving the entire cast with the same reactions to both good and bad news. The methods for improving one’s career boil down to meetings with high society and empty dinners to be present.
The director Billie August it does not defend its protagonists; on the contrary, it sits on the fence and builds a relationship of control that, from the spectator’s point of view, is not justified. Although the film may have stuck to the facts, a little pepper or two would help make the relationships more fictionally believable. As it is, we have the feeling that Karen is a bored rich lady who, on the verge of death, decides to use her money and influence to play with the lives of others, while Thorkild It’s just a charming puppy.
‘Or Covenant‘ is an interesting film that proves that even in Denmark – as in Brazil, in Hollywood and in many other places – to succeed in life, talent is not enough: you must have an IQ – that is, who you indicate.