It's All About Love

Institute History

  • 2003 Sundance Film Festival


In a near-future world, environmental damage causes flash ice ages and gravity loss, and people who experience devastating grief and loneliness are susceptible to a fatal disease that suddenly freezes the heart, transforming them into human carnage that collects on street corners and airport escalators. In this precarious world, filmmaker Thomas Vinterberg sets It's All About Love, an exquisitely surreal tale of romance and intrigue about two lovers negotiating their breakup amidst embroiled feelings and a sinister business conspiracy.

On a business trip, John (Joaquin Phoenix) stops over in New York City to sign divorce papers at the request of his ex-wife to be, world-famous ice-skating star Elena (Claire Danes). Her enormous entourage greets him warmly, but the kindly looking patriarch of the clan has a malevolent plan of appalling proportions that endangers the lives of John and Elena.

Through deftly balanced performances, Vinterberg masterfully creates a realistic world where everyone shines with a subtle gloss of insistent happiness. Only John's brother (Sean Penn), who spends an enlightened life aboard airplanes after overdosing on fear-of-flying pills, supports unbridled pursuit of love in a world where fully felt emotions can spell one's death.

— Shari Frilot

Screening Details

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