The Icelandic director, screenwriter, actor and producer, Baltasar Kormákur, accomanied by his actors Hera Hilmer and Gísli Örn Gardarsson, scriptwriter Olafur Egill Egilsson and executive producer Agnes Johansen, gave a press conference after his film Eidurinn/ The Oath was screened in the Official Section yesterday. It shows how a successful heart surgeon’s seemingly perfect life begins to unravel when his daughter gets mixed up with a drug dealer.
Kormákur said he had aimed to make a moral thriller to show how violence can shatter ordinary people’s lives. He had wanted to avoid the situation in many Hollywood films where there was a lot of shooting but everything turned out to be fine; in The Oath on the other hand there’s only one shot with dramatic consequences. He felt that dealing with social issues in a thriller format can be entertaining and he had tried not to lapse into melodrama but to let the film escalate into a thriller naturally.
The actors all stressed how topical the subject was and that it was having such a big impact at the moment in Iceland where a number of similar cases to the one in the film have recently hit the headlines.
As for the ambiguous ending, the director confessed that he had originally envisaged a more conclusive one but changed it to show how the main character will always be looking over his shoulder, racked with guilt. It’s a film about consequences.