Aberdeen (2005) from Tuna

Lena Headey plays a corporate attorney who uses too much coke and spends her evenings having unsatisfying sex with strangers. Her mother calls, and asks her to collect her alcoholic father from Norway and deliver him to Aberdeen for a rehab clinic. When she finds the father, the real story emerges. Mum is dying, and has asked daddy to finally marry her. Headey was raised by daddy, who spent half his time working on oil platforms and the other half trying to crawl into a bottle. Daddy proves to be something of a challenge to transport, especially since he doesn't want to go in the first place. Along the way, Headey picks up a truck driver, Ian Hart, who actually reaches her in bed, and helps get them all to Aberdeen.

Aberdeen (2000) is a joint Norwegian/English production, and the plot description makes it technically a road picture about going from one of those countries to the other. Most, if not all, of the problems they encounter along the way are standard set pieces, such as a flat tire, a gang of street toughs, a snippy airline counter clerk who won't let them on the plane because dad is drunk, and so forth. On the other hand, the plot is not the reason to watch the film. It is character-driven, and your enjoyment of this film will depend 100% on your reaction to the characters played by Headey and Stellan Skarsgård (as the father). Both gave award-winning performances, but neither portrayed the most congenial of characters. I liked the quirky main characters and cared what happened to them. I also liked the Ian Hart character, who was simply a good guy. Critics agreed, and were nearly unanimous in praise of the film.



  • Interview with director Hans Petter Moland
  • Widescreen transfer, anamorphically enhanced



Lena Headey shows her breasts in two scenes.

The Critics Vote ...


The People Vote ...

  • Box Office Mojo. It grossed only $64,000 in the USA, and $232,000 in Norway. The budget was $6.5 million.
The meaning of the IMDb score: 7.5 usually indicates a level of excellence equivalent to about three and a half stars from the critics. 6.0 usually indicates lukewarm watchability, comparable to approximately two and a half stars from the critics. The fives are generally not worthwhile unless they are really your kind of material, equivalent to about a two star rating from the critics, or a C- from our system. Films rated below five are generally awful even if you like that kind of film - this score is roughly equivalent to one and a half stars from the critics or a D on our scale. (Possibly even less, depending on just how far below five the rating is.

Our own guideline:

  • A means the movie is so good it will appeal to you even if you hate the genre.
  • B means the movie is not good enough to win you over if you hate the genre, but is good enough to do so if you have an open mind about this type of film. Any film rated B- or better is recommended for just about anyone. In order to rate at least a B-, a film should be both a critical and commercial success. Exceptions: (1) We will occasionally rate a film B- with good popular acceptance and bad reviews, if we believe the critics have severely underrated a film. (2) We may also assign a B- or better to a well-reviewed film which did not do well at the box office if we feel that the fault lay in the marketing of the film, and that the film might have been a hit if people had known about it. (Like, for example, The Waterdance.)
  • C+ means it has no crossover appeal, but will be considered excellent by people who enjoy this kind of movie. If this is your kind of movie, a C+ and an A are indistinguishable to you.
  • C means it is competent, but uninspired genre fare. People who like this kind of movie will think it satisfactory. Others probably will not.
  • C- indicates that it we found it to be a poor movie, but genre addicts find it watchable. Any film rated C- or better is recommended for fans of that type of film, but films with this rating should be approached with caution by mainstream audiences, who may find them incompetent or repulsive or both. If this is NOT your kind of movie, a C- and an E are indistinguishable to you.
  • D means you'll hate it even if you like the genre. We don't score films below C- that often, because we like movies and we think that most of them have at least a solid niche audience. Now that you know that, you should have serious reservations about any movie below C-. Films rated below C- generally have both bad reviews and poor popular acceptance.
  • E means that you'll hate it even if you love the genre.
  • F means that the film is not only unappealing across-the-board, but technically inept as well.


Based on this description, this film is a C+. Offbeat character-driven drama targeted to a small, discriminating audience. Well done. Loved by critics, but never found an audience.

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