A DAY AND A HALF on Netflix is a new thriller from Sweden (org. title: En dag och en halv). It has a runtime of just 94 minutes and excellent performances from the small core cast. Definitely worth watching. Read our full A Day and a Half movie review here!

A DAY AND A HALF is a new Netflix thriller with a story that feels familiar yet has a very fresh take on its plot. The movie is from Sweden (org. title: En dag och en halv) and features a small cast that delivers amazing performances. This is an extremely character-driven thriller, but it never gets boring or stale.

With a runtime of just 94 minutes, the tight plot and nuanced storytelling keep its audience on the edge of their seats. A study of both personal relationships and how there is always more than one side to a story. You’ll want to check out this one.

Continue reading our A Day and a Half movie review below. Find the thriller on Netflix from September 1, 2023.

A Day and a Half is inspired by true events

In this new Swedish Netflix thriller, we meet Artan as he shows up at his ex-wife Louise’s place of work. Things escalate very quickly as he demands to speak with her, but is told that he’ll have to wait as she’s with a patient. Very quickly, it turns out that Artan wants to see his daughter. Also, he is quick to make some very stupid choices.

The first one is the action of pulling out a gun and insisting on seeing his wife immediately.

Now, you might think that this turns into a hostage situation set in one room (the waiting room at a doctor’s office), but the hostage situation moves to a car on the move rather quickly. This is just one of the things that keep the plot moving forward constantly.

The Netflix thriller from Sweden is billed as being “inspired by true events”, which is different from the “based on a true story”. It basically means that the story is inspired by some of these terrible custody disputes that occur all over the world.

So, A Day and a Half is not based on one story in particular, but rather inspired by the far-too-many stories where things go desperately wrong between people who once loved each other.

A Day and a Half (2023) – Review | Netflix Thriller

A very nuanced story

While it may all seem very black and white at first – a crazy ex-husband shows up to harass his ex-wife and demand to see his daughter despite not having custody – there are many nuances in this movie. And thank the film Gods for that, as it would otherwise have been a very one-dimensional story.

As it turns out, Artan is very much a desperate man who makes awful decisions. However, it has also clearly been pushed in ways that a brutal and despicable. Sure, he is in the wrong, but not quite in all the ways he is accused of. Then there’s his ex-wife Louise, who has battled all kinds of crippling issues that I won’t reveal here.

The two have not been good for each other and now the police officer Lukas, who responds to the hostage situation at the doctor’s office, finds himself tasked with trying to figure out how it got to this point. Lukas has the perfect calm to handle both Artan and Louise as things escalate.

Artan is portrayed by Alexej Manvelov, who you may recognize from the Jack Ryan or Chernobyl series. His ex-wife Louise, who struggles with her own family as much as her desperate ex-husband, is portrayed by Alma Pöysti. She played the title role in the movie Tove (2020) about the creator of the Moomin books.

Finally, the role of police officer Lukas is portrayed by the always amazing Fares Fares who also directs this movie. While these three actors are the absolute heart and soul of the story, we also meet a few other characters along the way. Only briefly, but still, you may recognize actors such as Stina Ekblad, Annika Hallin, and Bengt C.W. Carlsson.

Watch A Day and a Half on Netflix now!

The Swedish language film inspired by true events is the directorial debut of Fares Fares. An actor you’ll probably recognize as he has made many international productions. These include movies such as Child 44 (2015) and Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (2016) as well as huge TV series like Westworld (season 2), The Wheel of Time, and Chernobyl.

For me, he always delivers performances that are nothing short of amazing. This movie is no exception, which is no small feat when also directing a feature film for the first time.

Along with starring in and directing A Day and a Half, Fares Fares is also the co-writer of the screenplay. He wrote it with Peter Smirnakos, who had nothing on his IMDb resume prior to this production. It’s one hell of a debut for the two filmmakers.

A Day and a Half (org. title: En dag och en halv) is out globally on Netflix on September 1, 2023.


Director: Fares Fares
Screenplay: Fares Fares, Peter Smirnakos
Cast: Fares Fares, Alexej Manvelov, Alma Pöysti, Stina Ekblad, Bengt C.W. Carlsson, Annica Liljeblad, Annika Hallin, Johni Tadi


In a desperate bid to reunite with his daughter, an armed man bursts into the medical center where his estranged wife works and kidnaps her.

I write reviews and recaps on Heaven of Horror. And yes, it does happen that I find myself screaming, when watching a good horror movie. I love psychological horror, survival horror and kick-ass women. Also, I have a huge soft spot for a good horror-comedy. Oh yeah, and I absolutely HATE when animals are harmed in movies, so I will immediately think less of any movie, where animals are harmed for entertainment (even if the animals are just really good actors). Fortunately, horror doesn't use this nearly as much as comedy. And people assume horror lovers are the messed up ones. Go figure!
Karina "ScreamQueen" Adelgaard
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