Written by Jeff Wright

If all tv was like this, we wouldn't need cinema. The 1994 Danish mini-series directed by BREAKING THE WAVES director Lars Von Trier, about a haunted hospital that is wildly funny and in parts, downright spooky. Broken into 4 parts (each approx. an hour long), THE KINGDOM is fast paced and never boring. A review, which is quoted on the video's box calls it "like ER on acid". I can see where the reviewer is comming from but I feel that THE KINGDOM is too good to be compared with a show like ER. The film (it was shot on 16mm, so technically I can call it that) spends the majority of its time following the everyday happenings of the hospital. It's terribly funny and I would even go so far that if you couldn't cross categorize films, I'd call it a comedy. The main characters are as follows (Just to get an idea if you'd be interested in watching them for the 4 hrs + of THE KINGDOM, and since I don't like really ruining the plotline. Though the basics are all here in the character descriptions.):

Helmer - Asshole extrodinaire. New to the hospital, and hates everyone. Screwed up a brain operation on a small child and must try and cover it up.

Mrs. Drusse - Little old lady who keeps admiting herself into the hospital to get in contact with its spirits. Mother of Bulder.

Moesgaard - Head of the hospital, and a bit of a dim witted chap.

Hook - Doctor who can get you what you need. Him and Helmer don't get along so well. He also sees Judith.

Rigmor - The only person on earth who can find it in her heart to love Helmer.

Bulder - Mrs. Drusse's son, and hospital maintenance worker.

Hansen - Hospital maintenance worker, alongside Bulder.

Mary - Spirit of a long ago dead girl.

Bondo - Doctor with strong values concerning the human body, and its use for science.

Judith - Doctor who's seeing Hook. She's also pregnant by a man who left her.

Mogge - Moesgaar's son. Studying to be a doctor. Lusts after Camilla.

Dishwasher 1 - He washes dishes at the hospital. Sort of like a Greek chorus, only with downs syndrome.

Dishwasher 2 - Same as Dishwasher 1, only female.

Camilla - Runs the sleep study section of the hospital. Object of affection, of Mogge.

Aage Kr?ger - You'll see.

Mona - Little girl who was brain damaged under the knife of Helmer.

That should give you a good idea of what THE KINGDOM is about, and if you want to see it or not. I should hope that you do want to see it now, and will seek it out at your video store. I think it's fantastic, and one of the most enjoyable films I've seen in a while.