• James Rutherford

'Pusher': The Fierce and Electrifying Tale of a Danish Drug Dealer in Severe Dire Straits


Movie poster for the film Pusher starring Kim Bodnia and Mads Mikkelsen

“Pusher” (1996) is a hard-hitting urban crime thriller from Denmark that details the exploits of a Copenhagen-based drug dealer named Frank (Kim Bodnia) who finds himself in overwhelming debt to ruthless Serbian drug lord Milo (Zlatko Burić). Already indebted to Milo from a previous deal-gone-awry, Frank convinces the formidable headman to extend his credit in the form of a hefty shipment of heroin. With the intervention of the police, however, Frank is left empty-handed and scrambling to fulfill his enormous obligation—leaving him at desperate odds with his sidekick Tonny (Mads Mikkelsen), his prostitute girlfriend Vic (Laura Drasbæk) and Milo’s chief henchman Radovan (Slavko Labović). The feature film debut of writer/director Nicolas Winding Refn (“Bronson, “Drive”), “Pusher” is an electrifying tale of criminality and desperation from the seedier streets of Northern Europe. The first installment in a trilogy of Pusher films (an altogether exceptional crime saga), Refn’s initial offering is a dynamic, enthralling and uniquely stylized classic of international cinema.

 

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