The men see how as they consume more alcohol–even up to malignant levels–more truths become revealed by those around them and their personal lives become exfoliated, often toxically, but this enables them to ultimately better themselves because of it. Even diamonds need to be forged through fire before they can become beautiful.
Infused with Kierkegaardian philosophies and a well-informed knowledge of its subject matter, Another Round is both incisive and candid. However, it’s ability to separate the poignancy from the cynicism allows for the contrast to be useful rather than cacophonous. Where Vinterberg continuously finds success is in his ability to manage the movie’s several conflicting moods with ease.
Despite a healthy dose of levity, Another Round is still not a comedy. There are some very funny moments, but then some equally effective ones on the more serious side of things as well. This doesn’t feel like a premise that could be accomplished without a frat comedy sensibility, yet Vinterberg does so exceptionally well, and without over-stylizing his aesthetic. Regardless of some issues with the trajectory of the story, the director and co-writer (along with frequent collaborator Tobias Lindholm) keeps a steady hand on the tone of the film, neither presenting the content in a shallow way nor becoming preoccupied in making moral judgements, instead allowing for his characters to learn for themselves, and us with them. After all, this is a film about a social experiment. The plot markers are inherently predictable, sure, but getting to them is an intoxicating ride.