Gabriel and Elias are two very different brothers. Gabriel is a worn down university professor and Elias is a man whose only concern is women and trivial knowledge. During a lecture Gabriel receives a phone call. Their father is dead. Things take a turn when the brothers learn through a videotape recorded by their now late father, that he in fact wasn’t their biological father. Gabriel and Elias discover that their biological father lives on the island Ork. They set out to the island and here they meet their real family. The brothers’ first meeting with the family doesn’t go as expected. Gabriel and Elias are stranded in the marshland of Ork. Here they meet the mayor of Ork and his daughter Ellen, a neurotic woman who hates her life, herself, her father and the island. Surrounded by abnormal people, Gabriel and Elias discover the truth about themselves and their relatives. A truth that while paralyzing them also sets them free.—Anders Thomas Jensen
The old sanatorium from the movie was part of the sanatorium in Beelitz, near Berlin, Germany. The complex consists of 60 buildings built between 1898 and 1930. When the sanatorium was uses as a military hospital in WWI, Adolf Hitler was among the wounded. After WWII, it was used as a military hospital by the soviet union until 1994. Since they passed on any modernization the complex is very popular among movie companies for history pieces. Parts of The Pianist (2002) and Valkyrie (2008) where shot in the area.