Sweden’s 2017 Oscar entry is a heart-winning tale of a seemingly hopeless curmudgeon who’s seemingly given up on life. His daily parade of annoyances is compounded when the Iranian immigrant next door flattens his mailbox. But an unexpected friendship arises from the encounter, setting Ove out on a new path to reconsider his downbeat worldview.
Based on a hit novel by Fredrik Backman, A Man Called Ove has echoes of recent north-European arthouse hits such as Rams and Toni Erdmann, but director Hannes Holm’s populist approach also comes across like a Swedish slant on It’s a Wonderful Life. The result went on to become one of Sweden’s biggest box office hits of recent years and the country official entry to the 2017 Academy Awards.