The Danish movie "Land of Mine" is as unsurprising and by-the-book as a wartime drama could be, and the only burning question one has leaving a screening is, "This pedestrian movie was a Foreign-Language Oscar nominee?"
World War II is coming to an end, and the Danish military is taking back land that was occupied by the Germans, along with a slew of German soldiers as prisoners of war. The Germans left some 2.2 million land mines buried in the beaches of Denmark's west coast and the Danish brass decide that captured German soldiers should have to find and defuse them.
Writer-director Martin Zandvliet follows a unit of young Germans assigned to dismantle mines on one stretch of beach. Overseeing them is a Danish military man, Sgt. Carl Rasmussen (Roland Møller), who treats his dog better than the Germans under his watch. But as he watches over these prisoners and sees that they are mostly teens drafted into the German army, his hard heart softens.