Lukas In ‘A Day And A Half,’ Explained: Did Lukas Get Arrested In The End?

Director Fares Fares’ film, A Day and a Half, also features a captivating performance by him. The film was centered around the couple Artan and Louise, but it was the character of Lukas that actually stood out. He entered the film when one bad move could have resulted in a disaster, but his calm demeanor and laser-beam focus prevented a tragedy. Artan was in a volatile state of mind, and he had Louise hostage. Without knowing his intentions, Lukas carefully examined the situation and tried to do his duty as a policeman. Lukas is a character that is fascinating because he defies expectations and conventions. One might expect him to be a clever cop, ready to neutralize the threat the first chance he gets. But Lukas actually understood that he had to be patient and not try to be the hero. Let’s take a deep dive into Fares Fares’ portrayal of Lukas and what intricate details were hidden in the character:


Spoilers Ahead


When Lukas took the workers in the hospital hostage, it fell upon Lukas to go in as a negotiator. He was part of the local Swedish police force and didn’t yet have the backing of the Task Force, which was to arrive soon. Fearing that Artan might do something to hurt the hostages, he ventured inside. He removed his cop uniform to build trust, and this was the start of a great entry for Lukas into the spousal dynamic. Here, he understood that Artan was just after Louse, as he let the others go. The cop in Lukas was still wondering if Artan was a terrorist or not. He didn’t forget to check Artan’s bag for weapons and bombs. He saw something that revealed what Artan was after.


The bag had a toy for Artan’s daughter, Cassandra. Lukas developed a soft corner for Artan, as he, too, was dealing with something related to fatherhood. But his duty dictated that he try to protect Louise. Artan refused to lower his gun at any point in time. So what could Lukas do? He avoided all the circumstances that could agitate the already disturbed Artan into firing that gun. Even if the gun went off by mistake, Lukas was the kind of cop who would take the blame. He ensured that Artan and Louise got into a cop car and were transported to a place as per Artan’s wishes. Lukas was attuned to the needs of the moment. It was important to gain Artan’s trust as well. The police were in place to arrest him at the next gas station, but when that plan didn’t work, Lukas was left on his own.

Lukas’ support was evident from the get-go. He tried to keep the couple away from the media’s eyes, and even he was surprised when the local news channel started to report that Artan was strapped with a bomb. Lukas wasn’t a xenophobe, and it was evident when Artan and Louise reached the Bremer residence. Artan and Louise’s daughter, Cassandra, were living with Louise’s parents, and Artan’s only objective was to see her again. When Louise’s father started a long tirade of personal attacks on Artan’s ethnicity and his character, Lukas understood that the situation was about to get ugly. He had to subdue Louise’s father, who walked in with a gun when Artan was taking Cassandra away. If he, too, was a xenophobe, then it was the perfect opportunity to take Artan down. But not only did he not see Artan as a monster, but he also cared about Louise and Cassandra’s safety.


The long ride continued, and Lukas tried to meet Artan’s every demand. He was getting firsthand experience of what the couple’s journey had been. He listened to them argue and fight in the back seat while all he could do was drive slowly so that Artan’s gun didn’t go off because of a sudden bump on the road. Had Lukas imagined that he would be dealing with this couple and their communication issues? Absolutely not. Another cop could have drawn his own gun and ended the matter, but not Lukas. His patience and his compassion took a front seat, and he started to get drawn into their conversation. Ever since he peeked into Artan’s bag and found not a bomb but a toy, something was simmering inside Lukas as well, and it came bursting out in the end.

Artan just wanted to see his daughter, and Lukas, too, had issues with his son. When the couple was fighting about their infidelity, Lukas also brought up his own truth. There was a deep connection with what Artan and Lousie were going through. Lukas had also destroyed his marriage when he cheated on his wife. This, in turn, soured his relationship with his son as well. The next morning came, and it was Lukas’ son’s birthday. Artan had gotten to meet his daughter, and Louise had come to an agreement to let him see her even though he didn’t have custody of Cassandra. Artan nudged Lukas to call his son and wish him well. Here, Lukas’ emotional side was on full display. He was no longer the cop but an emotional father who owned his mistakes. He, too, must have been seen as a monster by his son due to his affair, but he wanted to speak to him just once. He mustered up the courage and ultimately called his son. He broke down and was comforted by Artan and Louise. The trio had their own journey, traveling through Sweden.


In a strange way, Lukas’ story was similar to Artan’s. With a little tweaking of circumstances, Lukas could have been in his place. If he wasn’t a cop, who knows? He, too, would have done something as stupid and dangerous as walking into a hospital with a gun. Artan chose to surrender, and Louise walked away with Cassandra. What did Lukas learn? He learned that there is always a chance for redemption. It is our choices that ultimately define us. Lukas chose to apologize, and now he hoped for his son’s forgiveness. For this change of heart, he might even be rewarded with a fruitful relationship with his son.

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Ayush Awasthi
Ayush Awasthi
Ayush is a perpetual dreamer, constantly dreaming of perfect cinematic shots and hoping he can create one of his own someday.

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