1864: the critical reception of historical TV-drama

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The critical reception of Ole Bornedal’s television series 1864 has been relentless and confrontational.
This is not, however, uncommon when
it comes to historical fiction. But the scale and tone
have been out of
the ordinary. One important reason is that the TV series is
funded by earmarked money
directly from a political settlement. The debate was basically promoted by the broadcaster as well. Nevertheless,
Danish film history is not
without a precedent. Poul Henningsen’s controversial and
disputed documentary Danmark (1935) was funded by
the Danish Foreign Ministery and in its critical reception it has several similarities. Henningsen was among the first to promote
cultural radicalism, while director Bornedal declares cultural radicalism dead
in the light of the critical reception of the series. By way of classic
formalistic concepts this paper will analyse the series’ politico-historical
and nationalist context.

Effective start/end date01/09/201431/08/2016