Love & Anarchy

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Sofie and Max in a scene from Love & Anarchy. (Photo: Ulrika Malm/Netflix)
Sofie and Max in a scene from Love & Anarchy. (Photo: Ulrika Malm/Netflix)


4/5 Stars


A married consultant and a young IT technician assign each other challenges that question societal norms in a flirtatious game, leading to unintended consequences.


I'm exhausted and draped over my couch with my head sloped downwards on the far-left end of a Scandi grey two-seater. My legs are flung over the backrest on the other end. It's a misty and cloudy morning in Cape Town and I'm desperately refreshing every news app on my phone for the latest update on the US elections.

The painstakingly slow pace at which the results drip in from all the states has resulted in my screen time tallying a higher percentage than the Republican vote in Ohio. (A lot.) I desperately need a distraction. I tumble off the couch and walk with determination to my bedside table, pull open the drawer, drop my phone inside and slam it shut - a self-enforced break from the news which goes against a journalist's every instinct.

Netflix usually provides a momentary distraction, so I flip through the rows of content on the streaming service's homepage, listed according to genre, theme, or popularity. The process of selecting a show or film can sometimes take longer than vote counting in Georgia. (A long time.) But not today. Within minutes, the yellow poster of Love & Anarchy catches my eye.

I have no idea what it's about, who stars in it or what genre it is. But I blindly put my faith in the one that knows me best – my Netflix algorithm.

The Swedish romantic dramedy instantly has me hooked and down the rabbit hole I go. The quirky show keeps me occupied for so long that by the time I come up for air again, Joe Biden has been named president-elect. My Saturday is turning out much better than I expected.

I share in online celebrations over the democratic victory before quickly returning to my new world to engross myself in it once more.

Sofie (Ida Engvoll) is a married, working mom who is tasked with helping a publishing house move into the future before it sinks completely. For the die-hard book fanatics who work at Lund & Lagerstedt, modernisation means a decline in quality and they are sceptical of the changes that await.

But surprisingly, it's the young IT technician Max (Björn Mosten) who provides Sofie with her biggest challenge.

The two just don't get along and clash constantly. That's until the night that Max catches Sofie pleasuring herself to porn in her office when she thought everyone had left.

The power dynamic instantly shifts when Max reveals to Sofie that he has photographic evidence of her late-night delight. And so begins a mischievous game between the two that gets more dangerous and complicated the longer they play it.

Love & Anarchy is a delightful gem for adults that teeters between comedy and drama. It explores the fine line between lust and loyalty and pushes the boundary of societal norms.

When we venture out of our comfort zones, the thrill of the unknown becomes more and more enticing, but will we know where to draw to line? Should we even draw a line? 

If you're looking for an escape, a secret delight or a guilty pleasure, then you've found it. Put your phone in the drawer and concede to this enjoyment. 



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