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Film / Border

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Border (Swedish: Gräns) is a 2018 Swedish fantasy film directed by Ali Abbasi based on a short story by John Ajvide Lindqvist.

Tina is a woman who works for the Swedish Customs, and her supernatural sense of smell allows her to detect suspicious people such as smugglers and pedophiles. She also looks quite weird (this film was nominated for Best Makeup and Hairstyling at the 91st Academy Awards) and is conscious that most people think she is ugly. One day she meets a man named Vore who looks similarly strange.

Not to be mistaken for the Bollywood movie of the same name.

Tropes include:

  • All Trolls Are Different: Trolls in this film pass as humans, if quite ugly (by human standards). Tina even has a job and a (human) boyfriend. Dogs dislike her, but wild animals are very friendly to her. And there is the way trolls reproduce.
  • Bittersweet Ending: Vore, Tina's newer boyfriend commits suicide by jumping a bridge on a cruise ship, but Tina's life goes on and she receives a troll baby in a box from a community of trolls in Finland.
  • Bizarre Alien Sexes: Trolls have reversed sexual roles and organs, a fact that spectacularly comes to light when Tina and Vore make love.
  • Doorstep Baby: The film ends with Tina finding a large box on her doorstep. In the box is a baby troll, and a postcard from Finland, where Vore says there is a community of trolls.
  • Driven to Suicide: Vore, while being pursued by the police becomes fed up with humans being evil that he jumps into the ocean on a boat while handcuffed. Tina mourns for him afterward.
  • Fan Disservice: The love scene between Tina and Vore.
  • Humans Are the Real Monsters: Played with. Vore suggests that since some humans are pedophiles, they are therefore all monsters. Also humans have committed genocide against trolls.
  • The Nose Knows: Tina can smell guilt and shame. She openly uses this in front of her colleagues.
  • Oblivious Adoption: Tina is shocked to find out that her father isn't her real one.