101 Reykjavik  (2001) from Tuna

101 Reykjavik (2000) is an Icelandic comedy about a 30 something named Hlynur who still lives with his mother, survives on unemployment, and is not very lucky with women, other than Thrudur Vilhjalmdottir, who for some unaccountable reason is sweet on him. His greatest ambition is to learn to wake-up before the sun goes down. Life gets rather too interesting when his mother's Flamenco dance instructor, Victoria Abril, stays with him over the holidays, while his mother is visiting family. The two end up having wild sex. Mom (Hanna María Karlsdóttir) returns, and Hylur's life gets totally bizarre when he learns that Thrudur and the Flamenco instructor are both pregnant. Moreover, his mom has decided she is a lesbian, and the Flamenco instructor turns out to be her lover. Seems he was a convenient sperm donor.

The title is roughly equivalent to Beverly Hills 90210, as the 101 postal district is the trendy section of Reykjavik. Of course, that means little. As Hylnur says, "Nobody lives in Reykjavik unless they are born here. Even the ghosts are bored." The local pastime seems to be spending nights in a local club drinking and having sex. Remember, the nights are 6 months long.

Hylnur is far from a sympathetic character and nobody else in the story is especially likeable. However, it is interesting enough, has enough great nudity and features enough excellent performances that relating to a character isn't necessary in this case. It won a slew of festival awards. This is a very good foreign comedy, and a view of a culture new to me.

It is half in broken English and half in Icelandic, with English subtitles for the Icelandic parts.



  • Hanna María Karlsdóttir shows buns, including a rear gyno shot, in bed with Abril.

  •  Vilhjalmdottir shows breasts in a post sex scene.

  •  Abril does full frontal and rear nudity in a shower scene, and rear again in an after-sex scene.

  •  An unknown short-haired blonde flashes her breasts in a bar.

  •  The longest nude scene however, occurs when Hynur ducks into a bedroom at a party where Inga Maria Valdimarsdóttir is having sex. He sits and provides running commentary until she gets mad enough to stop and yell at him. This brings the owner of the apartment to the door, and we all discover that Valdimarsdóttir has been screwing the owner's boyfriend. Valdimarsdóttir shows everything, including a brief shot between the legs.

The Critics Vote ...

  • Super-panel consensus: three out of four stars. James Berardinelli 3/4, BBC 4/5.

The People Vote ...

  • It grossed about $300,000 in Iceland. Despite outstanding reviews, it reached the whopping total of one screen in its North American run, grossing $12,000
The meaning of the IMDb score: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence equivalent to about three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, comparable to approximately two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, equivalent to about a two star rating from the critics, or a C- from our system. Films rated below five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film - this score is roughly equivalent to one and a half stars from the critics or a D on our scale. (Possibly even less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

My own guideline: A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre. B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. C means it will only appeal to genre addicts, and has no crossover appeal. (C+ means it has no crossover appeal, but will be considered excellent by genre fans, while C- indicates that it we found it to be a poor movie although genre addicts find it watchable). D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre. F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well. Any film rated C- or better is recommended for fans of that type of film. Any film rated B- or better is recommended for just about anyone. We don't score films below C- that often, because we like movies and we think that most of them have at least a solid niche audience. Now that you know that, you should have serious reservations about any movie below C-.

Based on this description, this is a C+. If you like the genre and don't mind subtitles, this is a winner!

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