Synopsis by Jason Buchanan
A child's lie threatens to destroy the life of a divorced day-care worker attempting to reconnect with his teenage son in this emotionally charged drama from director Thomas Vinterberg (The Celebration, Submarino). In the wake of a fractured marriage, 40-year-old Lucas (Mads Mikkelsen) gets a new girlfriend and a new job in a day-care center while fighting to win custody of his teenage son. Lucas is a respected figure in his close-knit community, and the kids at the center where he works all look up to him. When Lucas repeatedly finds young Klara (Annika Wedderkopp) roaming the streets alone as her parents engage in angry shouting matches, he becomes something of a protector to the frightened young girl, often walking her home once the arguments have died down. When Klara attempts to repay Lucas' kindness with a kiss on the lips, the shocked teacher quickly corrects her by telling her that such a display of affection is not appropriate. Upset over being rebuffed by the man she so admires, Klara responds by telling the inexperienced manager of the day-care center that she saw Lucas engaged in inappropriate activity. Before long the rumor has caught fire, and as Christmas approaches mob mentality prevails. Everyone close to Lucas, including his two best friends and his son, quickly become pariahs in the community. Meanwhile, the desperate Lucas wages a losing battle to reclaim his dignity in a town that would sooner see an innocent man crucified than admit their mistake.
accusation, Christmas, community, day-care, gossip, lies, pariah, pedophilia, rumors