The Legacy/ Arvingerne Series One- PART TWO REVIEW. Minor spoilers only. On in the UK Sky Arts 1 and Sky arts 1 HD on Virgin media TV channel numbers 281 and 282 respectively Wednesdays @ 10pm

Part Two Review
(part One is Episode One of The Legacy)

So I am really enjoying The Legacy.  I am not going to write about it episode by episode because really not a lot happens.  The Legacy is deceptively slight.  since this microcosm of family life is examined in minutiae.  Like an actual form of life in a culture in a petri dish under a microscope.

The Legacy could be boring but is not.  Instead it is a fascinating character study up close and personal of everybody involved in this family melodrama.  Plus all the people associated with Verønika Grønnegard really.

On consideration the fact that the drama is so interesting indeed refreshing in flavour to watch is surely a feat of the acting skills of the actors and actresses involved.  Essentially we are watching a play.  Although there are interludes of scenery albeit briefly:  shop-fronts and driving in cars.

But in reality the surroundings are secondary and apart from the actual legacy itself: the all important house and workshop containing Verønika Grønnegard‘s life’s works as an artist.  As a mother too. One could say that her children are her life’s work too.   Deep.

So she, Verønika, has left behind both her artistic works as a legacy and her family behind.  The definition of the legacy she has deliberately left unclear.  Because in the last few months, weeks or days of her life we are not quite sure when: Verønika changed her mind.  About her legacy. She threw a curve ball into the mix and left the new happening, bubbling and creating behind her.

The new combination of events that will transpire will be another creation yet.  And so on, into the future.

Verønika Grønnegard is therefore, forever a perpetual artist.  Ah.

This mixing up of the big bag of family is shaken up like an old fashioned bag of lucky dip, jumbled in preparation.  Before each person or child dips in their hand and takes out a prize.

Such is the random nature of the reaction and behaviour of Verønika’s family, friends and business acquaintances, to her death.  The family’s drama is individually portrayed character by character and is ongoing like a multi-stranded inter-cut soap opera happening in synchronous time.

I like that the characters are offered up warts and all, in every kind of mood of anger, sorrow, despair.  Nastiness and aggression even.  Add in wonder, delight and worry into the stew.

Then there is Frederik.  Frederick has an intense suspenseful air inherent in many of his scenes.  We are aware that he is grieving.  He is a little high-wired.  Fired up, manic, hyperactive even.

Then via other character’s strands of the story (in this case Emile) we hear slowly of a tragedy.  As time goes on this story is embroidered upon with other coloured threads.  Told by other characters.  We start to wonder.  Or I did.

What makes the scenes with Frederik in a lot of the time especially sinister is the outright fear and horror on his own wife’s face.  When she hears about Frederiks’s involvement in the tragedy.

Perhaps all this sneaking suspicion is just me.  But I think we are meant to wonder.  Perhaps The Legacy is going to take a sinister turn in the road, down, down into the Enchanted Forest which everybody knows is too dangerous at night.  It is said that folk have entered and never returned from there.

There maybe a reason why the flowers that we see in the beginning are actually or seemingly drowning in the water instead. Then the cut glass crystal vase that the flowers are in smashes to smithereens.

I like, as I said, how the characters of: Gro, Tom, Emile, Frederik and his wife, Varg Veum (the Gallerist)  the Lawyer lady and art acquaintances are shown warts and all.

We initially feel sorry for Gro who seems bullied and put down by Verønika.  Gro passes through several stages of anger, aggression and rage.  Yet she energises herself into grandly, eloquently and efficiently arranging the funeral.

The funeral is arranged artistically by Gro as a testament perhaps to her mother and an exhibition of her own skill.  As a curator of a museum.  Gro is proud of her achievement.  Proving herself to everybody and most of all her mother.

Gro glows fiercely throughout all of her creation of the funeral and her arrangements after.  For her dream, the Trust.  She looks magnificent and beautiful in a striking red silk gown and slicked back ash blonde grey hair.

Yet many days and hours later we see Gro white faced almost ghost-like with grief.  As she sits dejected, believing all her dreams are in ruins.  In front of the huge blow up parachute silk animal sculpture.  Thing.

Me I just thought it looked a bit daft.  A beautiful creation as a thing of construction no doubt. However the creature was not really one thing (in particular) or another.

The creature kind of looked like a Moomintroll escapee made large.  Who looked overall a bit grumpy and deflated.  Strange when the creation of the creature was in reality inflated.  Beats me.

I was quite pleased therefore when Gro set to.  Reckon the Moomintroll folk would have found the creature a bit glum.  Possibly they would have treid to cheer him (or her) up. with a picnic.

However I predict that the Finn Family Moomintroll would have tired easily of the creature if he did not cheer up. They would have packed up their picnic and gone on their merry way.  With a cheery wave.
But I digress.

The creature (actually I am feeling I have been quite mean about him or her now) was just Wrong In The Space.

The house is kind of mad.  Just like the the art.  Like the art is meant to be funny, witty or light-hearted.  Not quite sure.  Somehow the art (or The Process) as we see Verønika doing, can sometimes seem sneer, even snooty in nature.

This deliberate abandonment of something is what is symbolised by the over-painted family portrait of Frederik’s father.  Frederik is furious of course.  The art assessor describes the painting as “art history”.  Such is the nature of modern art being held up for our introspection.


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