I doubt there are many people who live outside of Sweden who ever will hear of the movie “Behind Blue Skies”. While it has been shown on at least film festivals in North America (Chicago,Portland and Toronto), I would believe it’s realistically mostly aiming for the home market.
The plot is basically a coming-of-age story about a 17 year old boy in the mid 70s, who escapes his chaotic family situation when he gets a summer job at a resort in the Stockholm archipelago. One thing leads to another and before he knows it, he has become an assistant to a restaurant manager who turns out to run a shady business to say the least.
I’m not quite sure of what this movie wants to be. A thriller? A study in class differences? A comedy? Or a romance? It’s actually a bit of everything, a smorgasbord to put it nicely. If you’re a bit harsh you could argue that it lacks a bit of direction, it’s all over the place, which makes it feel less urgent and engaging.
Through IMDB I found a review where a Canadian film site enthusiastically claims that this piece of work is bound to be remade by Hollywood for the English-speaking marketplace. I wouldn’t put a bet on it honestly. The story isn’t good enough in itself. Actually I believe that the success it had in my own country mostly had to do with the pleasure of recognition: “Ohhh, look! There’s a video of a young Björn Borg” or “Hey, there’s that Abba song” or “I remember when the telephone boots looked like that!” in combination with a fair number of popular Swedish actors in the line-up.
Trivia: The main character is played by Bill Skarsgård, who is yet another acting son to Stellan Skarsgård. The opening scene of the movie is VERY explicit and display his genitals in it’s full glory in a double sense. I suspect it might be a bit shocking to some audiences. However, the body part we see isn’t Bill’s own. We’ve been reassured it’s a fake one, made in rubber. If you ask me I thought the scene was pretty loosely connected to the rest of the movie. It looked a little like an act of desperation to get some extra buzz going.
Behind Blue Skies ( Holm, 2010, SWE original titel: Himlen är oskyldigt blå) My rating: 3/5