With Your Permission is another viciously dark romantic comedy out of Denmark, this one centering on domestic abuse. Jan is a member of the catering staff on a Denmark-to-Sweden ferry, a ship full of the elderly and bored passengers who have chosen not to take the newly constructed, far more convenient bridge linking the two nations. His home life is miserable, with a negative, abusive wife making his nights a nightmare.

The beatings by his wife become so severe that there’s no way to hide it at work, and Jan is forced into therapy. Jan’s accidentally placed in a class with spousal abusers (rather than the abused), and the comedy flows from this misunderstanding.

We learn that Jan’s wife has a talent for Opera, one she has given up in order to be with her husband, and it is this fact that underlies her own depression. The farcical and violent situation becomes more comprehensible, and it all seems to come together in the end.

As it all unfolds, the film does avoid many pitfalls, and it comes across as a generally amusing, uniquely plotted romantic comedy. It may not be the finest film of this year’s fest, but I appreciate the risks that it takes, and with fine performances and good plotting it’s an edgy and droll film that’s worth a look.