‘Oslo, August 31st‘ Highlights a Recovering Heroin Addict’s Struggle Against Relapse

Anders Danielsen Lie, the main character in the new movie, Oslo, August 31st, is not your stereotypical heroin addict. He had a supportive upbringing with a mother and father who treated him well and showed him love. Oslo, Norway is his hometown and where he has wonderful memories and good friends from his past pre-addiction days. Despite so much support, Lie found his way into a life-threatening heroin addiction. For some people, addiction grows in infertile soil due to a combination of unseen triggers – it truly can happen to anyone.

Film Illustrates in Technicolor How Each Day Sober Is a Victory in Recovery

As the title of the movie implies, Oslo, August 31st demonstrates the reality of sobriety as a day-to-day fight. Lie, in his final weeks of rehabilitation, must conquer his addiction every second of every day. Staying clean is a minute-by-minute proposition for him at this phase of sobriety and the director, Joachim Trier, drives this point home detailing every mental, emotional and physical landmine to recovery that Trier encounters in a 24-hour period.

‘Oslo, August 31st‘ Shows That Leaving Rehab Can Be Emotionally Difficult

The ante for relapse is high for Lie in the film; he is released from rehab for one day in order to go on a job interview in Oslo. His many years of severe drug addiction have destroyed his career and familial ties, so traveling back to the city with so many memories, both positive and negative, is an emotional marathon for someone newly in recovery.

The audience never fully gets to know Lie, which is a reflection of the fact he doesn’t really understand himself. The filmmaker creates tension through the fact that the viewer never knows exactly what Lie might do next – and neither does he. Some of Lie’s obstacles to sobriety on his journey are not of his own making, but many of them are avoidable. For example, Lie stops by the home of an old friend which whom he used to get high and spends a great deal of time obsessively calling an old girlfriend.

Overcoming Addiction Patterns Starts With Rehab and Treatment

Through Lie’s misadventures, it becomes crystal clear that he has lost many years to his heroin addiction. This realization may motivate him to remain sober and present from now on – or it could cause him to fall back into his addictive patterns. Either way, this film presents a rare opportunity to experience the internal struggles that come along when you attempt to thwart addiction and live in sobriety.

If you know someone with a drug or alcohol problem, help is available. Here at Axis, we can provide them with the most effective therapies available in the treatment of addiction. Get in touch with us today and discuss the possibilities.