Joachim Trier, who still holds his memories of Ebertfest and his placement on Roger’s top ten lists near his heart, is a gift to obsessive cinephiles. The Danish director and his Norwegian co-writer Eskil Vogt have crafted some of the finest meditations on loneliness, family and community of the 21st century. “Reprise,” “Oslo August 31st,” and “Louder Than Bombs” are all time-shuffling marvels, passports into the deepest, darkest depths of suffering and isolation.
His latest, “Thelma,” appears at first to be a bit of a departure. Gone are the whirling interiors, metaphorically and literally, replaced with anxious landscapes, where lone figures walk uncertainly towards darkness. There’s a crispness and a stillness unlike anything Trier has yet produced, as he explores the pain of his hero, a girl who discovers burgeoning psychic distress buried inside her. I spoke to Trier about his icy sci-fi parable and his unique creative process.