TIFF 2014: ‘Force Majeure’ is a searing and knotty satire of masculinity

The folly and arrogance of masculinity is harshly scrutinized in Swedish director Ruben Östlund’s Force Majeure, an intense and intelligent domestic drama that asks some cutting questions about modern gender roles. High up in the French Alps, a family of four slowly crumbles after an instant of cowardice manifests itself and continues to marinate over the course of five days. That the act takes places in just the first 10 minutes and slowly festers up until the last few scenes speaks volumes about Östlund as a stylist.