By: Lana K. Wilson-Combs
In the international film, “The County”
from director/writer Grimur Hakonarson (“Rams”), Arndis Hronn Egilsdottir (“The Valhalla Murders”) plays a woman who rises up and finds her inner strength when a corporation threatens to seize the dairy farm she runs with her husband, Reynir (Hinrik Olafsson).
Inga (Egilsdottir) and the rest of the hard-working farmers in the small Iceland community, are falling deeper in debt to a bureaucratic co-op. It’s headed by greedy directors like Eyjólfur (Sigurður Sigurjónsson) and his yes man Leifur (Hannes Óli Ágústsson). They somehow know when folks in town and are buying supplies from other places for less. They harass them if they purchase or sell their products to anyone but them.
It’s quite a monopoly and one that the rest of the go-along-to-get along farmers have come to just live with.
However, when Inga’s husband is suddenly killed under suspicious circumstances, she decides enough is enough. She sets out to expose and put an end to the co-op’s bullying. No more status quo.
The problem is no one is as brave as Inga. At least initially. They know how powerful the co-op is. They have also seen Inga get arrested. Some in the town even blame Inga for her husband’s death.
Still, Inga remains persistent in winning over the community even if it means looking foolish and risking her life. Fortunately, she gets some backing from her friend Friðgeir (Sveinn Ólafur Gunnarsson) and makes the co-op take notice through a few eye-opening measures that includes spraying milk all over their building.
Arndis Hronn Egilsdottir is a real gem here. She anchors “The County” with humor, warmth and charm and proves that one person really can make a difference in the lives of others.
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Watch This Trailer For "THE COUNTY"
Lana K. Wilson-Combs is a member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), The Black Film Critics Circle (BFCC), The American Film Institute (AFI), and a Nominating Committee Voting Member for the NAACP Image Awards.