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How far would decent human beings be willing to go, when tragedy blurs the line between just and unjust? With “A Second Chance”, Susanne Bier and Anders Thomas Jensen have crafted another startling yet moving drama about how easily we lose our grasp on justice, when confronted with the unthinkable, and life as we know it is hanging by a thread.


Director: Susanne Bier

Cast: Nikolaj Coster Waldau, Ulrich Thomsen, Nikolaj Lie Kaas, Maria Bonnevie, May Andersen

Language: Danish


Taking a break from Mads Mikkelsen I now move to my other favourite Dane 😉 Nikolaj Coster Waldau ❤

What I liked:

  • The actors: Nikolaj Coster Waldau (NCW) & Nikolaj Lie Kaas (NLK) were great in their respective roles. I was surprised to learn that this was model May Andersen’s first role as an actor. She is very good as Sanne. NCW & Maria Bonnevie have great chemistry & hence it is very comforting to see them as a happy family with their little baby boy. In stark contrast is NLK & Mary’s home. NCW broke my heart when Andreas replaces his boy with Sanne’s & then much later discovers it was his own wife Anna who had caused the death of their baby. Sanne’s grief on losing her baby feels too real as well. NLK ensures that Tristan isn’t a one dimensional abusive jerk. No matter how disgusting, it is interesting to watch his scenes.
  • Denmark seems so heavenly in the movie. The scenes where Anna & Andreas take their baby on nightly strolls…the streets here would never be so quiet & deserted even if a curfew was imposed. 😛 You could just walk & walk & it would be so peaceful & refreshing.

And sadly that is all that I liked in the movie.

What I did not like:

  • The story: I tried hard to wrap my mind around the story line but somehow I couldn’t convince myself. A lot of questions kept popping up in my head. So your child dies but doesn’t its body deserve some respect? Does it really deserve to be wrapped in shit covered clothes of another? Does it deserve to be left with a couple like Tristan & Sanne? Initially I thought Andreas was doing it for his wife Anna, so that when she makes up the next morning he would replace the baby with theirs & she would be none the wiser about the baby exchange. But then he tells her the whole truth. Instead of taking her to a doctor he risks the child & even his wife by keeping her at home? And then towards the end, Andreas returns the baby to Sanne?!! Why? She feels terrible for her baby & for being a bad mother. But she had done nothing to guarantee that she would be a good mother. The child was lucky that his mother didn’t once again find some drug addicted abuser like Tristan or where would the baby have been? Would it have been so wrong & terrible for Andreas to keep the baby? Instead of undeserving people like Sanne & Anna getting a second chance, I would have much liked Andreas getting a second chance. A chance to be truly happy, to have a family with his boy.
  • The movie is too long. It drags in places.