Krister and Eva are trying to get their family back to a normal, nice life when suddenly Eva dies in a terrible car crash. The death of Eva twists the life of Krister and his daughters in more than one way, and horrible visions begin to haunt him every night. Something wants him dead.
Sweden has gotten a minor boost in horror films in the past couple of years (I say minor because it's still nothing compared to US) and I can usually break them into two categories. The categories are "watchable" and "non-watchable". Yeah, I can't say there has been a great one, at least from what I have seen. In watchable category we have something like "Psalm 21" and "Insane". Non-watchables are "Die Zombiejäger" and "Sektor 236". "Marianne" is another one that isn't great, but it does undoubtedly go to the "watchables".
What I liked about the story is that it's slow and focuses a lot on the relationship of father and daughter. It's a film of the supernatural kind where our main man Krister, who recently got together with his wife Eva and moved home, has to cope with the death of Eva. The death is also hard on his daughter, Sandra, and it's shown in form of rebelling against her father. Something that's really hard for him when he also has a baby daughter to take care of. At night's he can't sleep, and someone or something is trying to kill him. The further we go into this tragedy, the more apparent it becomes exactly what it is that is after him, and why.
Even though it is a supernatural horror I don't think that's all it has going for it. The family drama is actually more often than not what we're focused on, and the only scenes that really got to me where a few scenes between the father and the daughter. The horror scenes are never scary and not very original, but they work for what they are. Sadly this part of the film never gets worked through completely and by the end of the film I didn't feel I satisfied. The story is also very confusing to begin with because it jumps between past, present and visions poorly, but towards the end of the film we have it figured out fairly well and can finally follow it well.
The acting is actually pretty good, even though I didn't like a few characters. I can't really tell if it was the characters or the actors I didn't enjoy, but it doesn't really matter. They're not so bad that it hurts the film, but I did feel like facepalming a few times. Thomas Hedengran is hands down the star of the show and without his portrayal of Krister I don't think the film would've worked as well as it did.
Sweden got another watchable thriller / horror with "Marianne". It's just a shame that it never reaches above mediocrity. The supernatural aspect of the film never really worked for me, and ultimately I didn't feel this part of the story actually got an ending. The part that was good was the family drama, and the fact that it was a slow movie. This was a film I had heard a lot of good things about and maybe that raised my expectations a bit (it's hard to expect excellence from a Swedish horror, so I didn't think it would be THAT good) but at least it is a watchable Swedish horror, something we need more of.