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By Merle Bertrand | January 22, 2001

Iceland is green and Greenland is ice. That clever, gross over-generalization is about the only thing most folks probably know about this quasi-Arctic island nation. That, and that Reykjavik was the host city for a nearly disastrous Reagan-Gorbachev summit at the height of glasnost fever.
Hlynur isn’t exactly an encyclopedia of knowledge either. He’s a nearly-thirty-year-old unemployed slacker who still lives at home with his mother and whose main sources of entertainment are internet porn and video games. His social life consists of hanging around with two similar underachievers and partying at the neighborhood pub on the weekends. He freely acknowledges that he doesn’t have much luck with women, even while (foolishly) fending off involvement with Hofy, an attractive local with the hots for him…who plans to fill up the two empty bedrooms in her house with little ones.
Hlynur’s world becomes more complicated when Lola, a vivacious Spanish Flamenco dancing instructor and friend of his mother’s, comes to visit for a few days. Like an adolescent falling for one of his big sister’s friends, Hlynur quickly becomes wildly infatuated with their sexy visitor. With mom away on New Year’s Eve, Hlynur and Lola engage in a frantic and explosive drunken one-night stand. It’s shortly afterwards that Hlynur’s mom comes out as a lesbian…with a pregnant Lola as her partner. Any guesses who the father of their child might be?
When people have extra time on their hands, their thoughts often turn to either food or sex. And since Hlynur has way too much time to kill, he thinks about sex a lot. As a result, the constant undercurrent of sexual tension running throughout powers “101 Reykjavik” — a film that’s as outlandish as it is entertaining.
Filled with all sorts of quirky characters and set in an exotic, if frigid, locale, director Baltasar Kormakur has crafted a slyly comical, deliciously wry coming-of-age-much-too-late story. “101 Reykjavik” is simply a hoot.

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