SCANDINAVIAN FILM FESTIVAL
Sydney Tue 23 Nov – Wed 15 Dec
Melbourne Fri 26 Nov - Wed 15 Dec
Due to the last extended COVID lockdowns, the Scandinavian Film Festival had to be rescheduled in Sydney and Melbourne but now, at last, the new dates have been announced. This is great news because films from these northern countries are almost always novel and inventive, shining a light on the cultures of Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Sweden and Norway. According to festival director, Elysia Zeccola of Palace Films, “We emerge from hibernation with a stunning selection of the best of new Nordic cinema including award-winning films direct from the 2021 Göteborg Film Festival featuring the brightest stars of the region.”
Opening night features Jeanette Nordahl’s Wildland, which is set in Denmark’s underworld and stars newcomer Sandra Guldberg Kampp and Sidse Babett Knudsen of Borgen fame. It’s a gritty tale of an orphaned girl sent to live with her aunt, who heads up a criminal syndicate involving her adult sons. The festival closes with the 50th anniversary screening of Jan Troell’s epic film The Emigrants, starring the late Max von Sydow and Liv Ullmann as a poor farming couple who migrate to the USA in the mid-1800s.
Other films to watch out for are: Grimur Hákonarson’s follow up to his Icelandic hit Rams, The County, which again tells the story of ‘little people’, in this instance a dairy farmer’s wife, fighting against the powers that be; Tigers, the winner of the Best Nordic Film at this year’s Göteborg Film Festival, which tells the true story of a 16-year-old Swedish soccer prodigy joining top team Inter Milan and finding that, sometimes, you have to be careful what you wish for; the Norwegian film Beware of Children, another Best Nordic Film award winner (from the 2020 edition of Göteborg Film Festival), which examines the ramifications of a school-yard incident wherein the daughter of a left-wing politician seriously injures the son of a political leader from the right; and, from Finland, Any Day Now, about an Iranian family awaiting a decision on their asylum application and what happens when they are knocked back by the authorities. The film is based on the childhood experiences of Finnish-Iranian debut director Hamy Ramezan.
With twenty-one features in total, the much-anticipated festival promises to hold treats suitable for every taste. For full program details click here - Scandinavian Film Festival 2021.