Filmkommentaren

ARTE "Generation Ukraine" at DOKLeipzig

Written 29-09-2023 11:28:49 by Tue Steen Mller

In this year’s edition, DOK Leipzig is presenting a DOK Industry Talk on Generation Ukraine, a new initiative by the ARTE Group aimed at supporting the Ukrainian filmmaking industry by co-producing 12 documentaries that explore Ukrainian reality in the throes of the ongoing war. 

The Talk, held on 10 October at 16:30 – 18:00 CEST, will present the ARTE initiative and showcase six of the projects with the participation of the film teams. The Talk will be moderated by documentary film producer and consultant Heidi Fleisher... read more



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Categories: Festival, Articles/Reviews ENGLISH

Marc Isaacs: This Blessed Plot

Written 28-09-2023 15:13:49 by Tue Steen Mller

In 2007 Marc Isaacs made ”All White in Barking”, in 2020 “The Filmmaker’s House” and now “This Blessed Plot”. You should know, when reading this article that I am a big admirer of Isaacs having seen, loved and written about these three films. In many workshops and seminars we lucky mentors, who follow documentaries and documentarians always stress the importance of finding your own “handwriting”, your way of filmmaking, the “how” being much more important than the “what”. Form before content.

Marc Isaacs is a unique example of a filmmaker, who has found and developed his way of filmmaking outside the established British (television) formatted way of documentary storytelling. Together with Adam Ganz, who wrote the story, he has made “This Blessed Plot”, which has many layers and a beautiful way of dealing with Life and Death. With humour and compassion.

Here you will have my focus on the story that I enjoyed from start till end:



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Categories: Festival, Film History, Articles/Reviews ENGLISH, Directors

CinDoc Tbilisi Winners

Written 27-09-2023 12:51:16 by Tue Steen Mller

In Batumi the CinéDoc Tbilisi performed their International Documentary Film Festival with a competition for Georgian long documentary films as well as short. Below you will find the jury motivations:



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Categories: Festival, Articles/Reviews ENGLISH

Nordisk Panorama Winners 2023

Written 26-09-2023 21:28:08 by Tue Steen Mller

Winners  Nordisk Panorama Film Festival 2023
MALMÖ, Sweden — Today, Nordisk Panorama Film Festival proudly presents the winners of our 34th edition. The Awards Gala took place 26 September in Malmö City Hall.

Out of the 64 films selected to compete in our competition categories, 6 films were chosen for this year's top prizes. Included in this announcement is the winner of the first Nordic Documentary Producer Award.

Keep reading for the full list of winners.
 
Best Nordic Documentary
Apolonia, Apolonia
Apolonia, Apolonia by Lea Glob
Apolonia, Apolonia, (Apolonia, Apolonia), Lea Glob,  116' min, Denmark, 2022.
Motivation:
“For the best Nordic doc, we wanted to celebrate an exceptional movie that leans on one of the most precious documentary filmmaking resources: the use of time. It is an adorable movie, about life long friendship, about the sacrifices you have to make to express yourself in arts, and about dreams and plans that you stick to, wherever life takes you. The competition was full of surprises and really good filmmaking and movies, we ultimately singled out the one that will stay with us the longest, and this is the one that features a huge butt plug: Apolonia, Apolonia by Lea Glob.”

Synopsis:
When Apolonia Sokol was born her parents were in an underground theatre group in Paris and she grew up in an artists’ community—the ultimate bohemian existence. In her 20s, she studied at the Beaux-Arts de Paris, one of the most prestigious art academies in Europe. When Danish filmmaker Lea Glob first portrayed Apolonia in 2009, hers appeared to be a storybook life. Lea kept returning to film the charismatic Apolonia and a bond developed between the two young women.

About the director:
Lea Glob (born 1982, Denmark) entered The National Film School of Denmark in 2007, and graduated with her short film Meeting My Father Kasper Tophat (2011). In her films you often find strong women, and she uses both body and camera as a means of understanding our world. Apolonia, Apolonia is her debut as solo-director, and the film won the main award at IDFA 2022.

About the award:
The Best Nordic Documentary Award is presented to one of the 15 films selected for the competition. The award goes to the director(s) of the winning film.

Prize: The cash award of 11.000 € is sponsored by Nordic public broadcasters DR, NRK, RUV, SVT and YLE.

About the jury.
 
Honourable Mention
Hypermoon
Hypermoon by Mia Engberg
Hypermoon, (Hypermoon), Mia Engberg, 78' min, Sweden, 2023.
Motivation:
“We want to start by giving a special mention to a very special film that had a huge personal impact. It was a film that for some of us, when it started, felt too close to the bone, but it left us feeling warm and energised. It was a powerful visualisation of feelings many of us not just dread, but struggle to face up to. A lesson in tackling some of life’s most difficult challenges. We are pleased and proud to award a special mention to Mia Engberg and her wonderful film, Hypermoon.”

Synopsis:
At the hospital, Mia, the film director, gets life-altering news. It prompts her to reflect back on her life. A former lover, Vincent the French ex-convict, finds her old film reels in his basement. Meanwhile, in a dream, a child astronaut philosophises alone in space on the fragility of existence.

About the director:
Mia Engberg (born 1970, Sweden) is a director and producer known for her cutting edge films that move between documentary and poetry. Her production Dirty Diaries – 12 shorts of feminist porn – gained international attention and Belleville Baby (2013) was awarded Best Documentary at the Swedish Film Awards. Mia is also author of the book The Visual Silenceand a base player in the band Vagina Grande.

About the jury.
 
Best Nordic Short Film
Norwegian Offspring
Norwegian Offspring by Marlene Emilie Lyngstad
Norwegian Offspring, (Norwegian Offspring), Marlene Emilie Lyngstad, 45' min, Denmark, 2023.
Motivation:
“For a film that really unsettled us and stayed in our minds, creating much discussion between us about masculinity, outsider ideologies, lack of connection and warped intimacy, involving a very problematic, fascinating and well-acted protagonist. Well-shot and paced, this film didn’t make us notice its long running time. We unanimously award Norwegian Offspring by Marlene Emilie Lyngstad."

Synopsis:
A mother passes away, and her estranged son, obsessed with theories about the repression of male sexuality in modern society, starts longing for offspring of his own.

About the director:
Marlene Emilie Lyngstad (born 1997, Norway) is a Norwegian/Danish director and scriptwriter. In her work she tries to evoke a conflicting mixture of empathy, disgust, humor and melancholy. She has acknowledged she's an insignificant part of a larger incomprehensible plot, and is trying to deal with it by laughing and crying with seamless transitions.

About the award:
The Best Nordic Short Film Award is presented to one of the 23 films selected for the competition. The award goes to the director(s) of the winning film. The prize-winning film will qualify for consideration in the Short Film Category of the Academy Awards.

Prize:
The cash award of 5.000 € is sponsored by the association of Danish Film Directors and the Swedish Film Directors.

About the jury.
 
New Nordic Voice
The jury has decided to split the cash award of 5.000 €, sponsored by AVEK and Film i Skåne, between a documentary and a short film.
Under Construction
Under Construction by Markus Toivo
Under Construction, (Wanha Markku), Markus Toivo, 61' min, Finland, 2023.
Motivation:
“Magnificently cinematic and poetic, this film opens the gate, both physical and metaphorical, on the silence and loneliness that endures between fathers and sons. At times so painful, and at others laugh out loud joyous. Markus Toivo gently leads us trough themes around masculinity, inter-generational trauma and the limitations of patriarchy in his brilliant film Wanha Markku.”

Synopsis:
Markku built a house for his family with his bare hands. Like a real man is meant to do, working hard from dawn to dusk so that his seven children would have a roof over their heads. But it was too much and Markku burned out. He felt he had to leave his family and disappear abroad.

About the director:
Markus Toivo (born 1992, Finland) has graduated from ECAM, the film school of Madrid, Spain, where he majored in film directing. Markus works both in fictional and documentary films. Under Construction (Wanha Markku) is his first feature length film.

About the award:
The New Nordic Voice Award introduces promising Nordic filmmakers. Their work has not previously been screened in the Nordisk Panorama Film Festival competition programme, and the selected films are among the first releases by the filmmaker.

About the jury.
 
New Nordic Voice
Prelude
Prelude by Arman Zafari
Prelude, (Murtuma), Arman Zafari, 19' min, Finland, 2023.
Motivation:
“In a mere 19 minutes this fiction short made us jurors look deep within ourselves and what it means to strive for perfection. Perhaps it takes a young filmmaker to probe taboos around middle class motherhood. Fine lead performances in this beautifully structured film makes Arman Zafari’s Prelude an exciting new Nordic voice.”

Synopsis:
Helena is having an evening with her family when a stranger knocks at the door. A man confronts her with accusations about her perfect family. Helena drives the man away, but a seed of doubt has been planted.

About the director:
Arman Zafari (born 2001, Afghanistan) came to Finland in 2016 as a refugee and studies film directing at the Aalto University. Before moving to Finland, he lived in Iran as an undocumented migrant. Having spent most of his time at home with fear of deportation, he found a safe space with films. Prelude is his graduation film.

About the award:
The New Nordic Voice Award introduces promising Nordic filmmakers. Their work has not previously been screened in the Nordisk Panorama Film Festival competition programme, and the selected films are among the first releases by the filmmaker.

About the jury.
 
Nordic Documentary Producer Award
Stina Gardell
Stina Gardell, Sweden.

Motivation:
“With unique determination, tenacity and assurance, Stina Gardell has developed world class Swedish documentaries for years. With consistent artistic vision and penchant for tuning into what the audiences are interested in, she has created a strong signature brand. Stina has contributed immensely to the Swedish documentary field with films like I am IngridThe World’s Most Beautiful Boy and The Nun.”
About the director:
Stina Gardell is one of Sweden's most meritorious documentary filmmakers, educated at the Stockholm Academy of Dramatic Arts, and with her own Stockholm-based company Mantaray Film as a base for a solid production of award-winning documentary films. Stina has produced 28 feature documentaries and co-produced 9, and has received a number of prestigious film awards e.g. Guldbaggen, Kristallen, Ikaros and Silverfjärilen.

About the award:
The Nordic Documentary Producer Award is our newest award category created to acknowledge the invaluable role of the producer within documentary filmmaking. One producer from each of the five Nordic countries has been nominated based on work completed within the previous five years.

Prize:
The cash award of 10.000 € is sponsored by Danish Producers’ Association, Virke Norwegian Producers Association, Audiovisual Producers Finland (APFI), the Finnish Documentary Guild, Filmproducenternas Rättighetsförening (FRF), and the Icelandic Filmmakers Association.
 
Young Nordic Award
Brouillarta
Brouillarta by Ingvild Søderlind
Brouillarta, (Brouillarta), Ingvild Søderlind, 15' min, Norway, 2023.
Synopsis:
Elliot, a ten-year-old Norwegian, is spending summer with his grandparents in the Basque country in France. He struggles to fit in and feels different from his sharp-witted French cousins. In a mystical village amid brutal landscape, his anxiety grows. And who is Brouillarta?

About the director:
Ingvild Søderlind (born 1975, Norway) is a prizewinning director and scriptwriter. Her breakthrough short Jenny premiered in the 2011 Berlinale. Søderlind has directed films with young and strong female leads, often challenging the depiction of female sexuality and defying stereotypical conceptions. Søderlind has also made short films with her own children as actors, depicting, with a dark undertone, the complex love between siblings. Søderlind directs with an awareness of social status and living conditions, but portrays them with beauty and tenderness, often dreamy and subjective in its point of view.

About the award:
The 11 films in the Young Nordic programme compete for the love of our most critical audience. The festival's youngest viewers are asked which of the films in this category they like the best, and the competition title with the most votes is then awarded.

Prize:
The cash award of 1.500 € is sponsored by Nordisk Panorama Film Festival and will be awarded in honour of BUFF, the International Children and Young People’s Film Festival in Malmö, as a celebration of their 40-year anniversary.
 
City of Malmö's Audience Award
The Home Game
The Home Game by Smari Gunnarsson & Logi Sigursveinsson
The Home Game, (Heimaleikurinn), Smari Gunnarsson & Logi Sigursveinsson, 79' min, Iceland, 2023.
Synopsis:
An impulsive Icelander wants to fulfil his father’s failed dream: to get their beloved fishing village a home game on the unused football pitch he built. A team of underdogs registers for a prestigious men’s tournament. The team includes a fisherman and his son, a church warden – and a mother of three. But when her inclusion threatens to disqualify them, a sequence of events produces an unlikely female hero.

About the directors:
Smari Gunnarsson (born 1985, Iceland) is an Icelandic writer and director, a self-proclaimed football specialist – who loves the game as well as finding the sense of humour in every good story. After receiving a BA training in European Theatre Arts, Smari began creating his own work and further honed his writing skills in the UK through initiatives at The NFTS and BFI Network. The Home Game, screening in competition at Nordisk Panorama, is Smari's first feature length film.

Logi Sigursveinsson (born 1995, Iceland) studied screenwriting and directing at the Icelandic Film School. In 2018 his graduation film Bjarnarblus won best film at Northern Wave Film Festival in Iceland. Logi works freelance as a cinematographer, editor and vfx artist. The Home Game, screening in competition at Nordisk Panorama, is Logi's first feature length film.

About the award:
To receive the City of Malmö’s Audience Award at Nordisk Panorama Film Festival is among the finest appreciations a filmmaker can get. The audience can vote for any of the Nordic short films and documentaries competing in the main competition programmes. The award goes to the director(s) of the winning film.

Prize:
The cash award of 2.500 € is sponsored by the City of Malmö.
 
 
 
 
 


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Categories: Festival, Articles/Reviews ENGLISH

Written 26-09-2023 21:25:49 by Tue Steen Mller

Nordisk Panorama has announced its winners for the 30th edition of the festival. Here is a copy-paste of a well written and presented press release:

Winners  Nordisk Panorama Film Festival 2023
MALMÖ, Sweden — Today, Nordisk Panorama Film Festival proudly presents the winners of our 34th edition. The Awards Gala took place 26 September in Malmö City Hall.

Out of the 64 films selected to compete in our competition categories, 6 films were chosen for this year's top prizes. Included in this announcement is the winner of the first Nordic Documentary Producer Award.

Keep reading for the full list of winners.
 
Best Nordic Documentary
Apolonia, Apolonia
Apolonia, Apolonia by Lea Glob
Apolonia, Apolonia, (Apolonia, Apolonia), Lea Glob,  116' min, Denmark, 2022.
Motivation:
“For the best Nordic doc, we wanted to celebrate an exceptional movie that leans on one of the most precious documentary filmmaking resources: the use of time. It is an adorable movie, about life long friendship, about the sacrifices you have to make to express yourself in arts, and about dreams and plans that you stick to, wherever life takes you. The competition was full of surprises and really good filmmaking and movies, we ultimately singled out the one that will stay with us the longest, and this is the one that features a huge butt plug: Apolonia, Apolonia by Lea Glob.”

Synopsis:
When Apolonia Sokol was born her parents were in an underground theatre group in Paris and she grew up in an artists’ community—the ultimate bohemian existence. In her 20s, she studied at the Beaux-Arts de Paris, one of the most prestigious art academies in Europe. When Danish filmmaker Lea Glob first portrayed Apolonia in 2009, hers appeared to be a storybook life. Lea kept returning to film the charismatic Apolonia and a bond developed between the two young women.

About the director:
Lea Glob (born 1982, Denmark) entered The National Film School of Denmark in 2007, and graduated with her short film Meeting My Father Kasper Tophat (2011). In her films you often find strong women, and she uses both body and camera as a means of understanding our world. Apolonia, Apolonia is her debut as solo-director, and the film won the main award at IDFA 2022.

About the award:
The Best Nordic Documentary Award is presented to one of the 15 films selected for the competition. The award goes to the director(s) of the winning film.

Prize: The cash award of 11.000 € is sponsored by Nordic public broadcasters DR, NRK, RUV, SVT and YLE.

About the jury.
 
Honourable Mention
Hypermoon
Hypermoon by Mia Engberg
Hypermoon, (Hypermoon), Mia Engberg, 78' min, Sweden, 2023.
Motivation:
“We want to start by giving a special mention to a very special film that had a huge personal impact. It was a film that for some of us, when it started, felt too close to the bone, but it left us feeling warm and energised. It was a powerful visualisation of feelings many of us not just dread, but struggle to face up to. A lesson in tackling some of life’s most difficult challenges. We are pleased and proud to award a special mention to Mia Engberg and her wonderful film, Hypermoon.”

Synopsis:
At the hospital, Mia, the film director, gets life-altering news. It prompts her to reflect back on her life. A former lover, Vincent the French ex-convict, finds her old film reels in his basement. Meanwhile, in a dream, a child astronaut philosophises alone in space on the fragility of existence.

About the director:
Mia Engberg (born 1970, Sweden) is a director and producer known for her cutting edge films that move between documentary and poetry. Her production Dirty Diaries – 12 shorts of feminist porn – gained international attention and Belleville Baby (2013) was awarded Best Documentary at the Swedish Film Awards. Mia is also author of the book The Visual Silenceand a base player in the band Vagina Grande.

About the jury.
 
Best Nordic Short Film
Norwegian Offspring
Norwegian Offspring by Marlene Emilie Lyngstad
Norwegian Offspring, (Norwegian Offspring), Marlene Emilie Lyngstad, 45' min, Denmark, 2023.
Motivation:
“For a film that really unsettled us and stayed in our minds, creating much discussion between us about masculinity, outsider ideologies, lack of connection and warped intimacy, involving a very problematic, fascinating and well-acted protagonist. Well-shot and paced, this film didn’t make us notice its long running time. We unanimously award Norwegian Offspring by Marlene Emilie Lyngstad."

Synopsis:
A mother passes away, and her estranged son, obsessed with theories about the repression of male sexuality in modern society, starts longing for offspring of his own.

About the director:
Marlene Emilie Lyngstad (born 1997, Norway) is a Norwegian/Danish director and scriptwriter. In her work she tries to evoke a conflicting mixture of empathy, disgust, humor and melancholy. She has acknowledged she's an insignificant part of a larger incomprehensible plot, and is trying to deal with it by laughing and crying with seamless transitions.

About the award:
The Best Nordic Short Film Award is presented to one of the 23 films selected for the competition. The award goes to the director(s) of the winning film. The prize-winning film will qualify for consideration in the Short Film Category of the Academy Awards.

Prize:
The cash award of 5.000 € is sponsored by the association of Danish Film Directors and the Swedish Film Directors.

About the jury.
 
New Nordic Voice
The jury has decided to split the cash award of 5.000 €, sponsored by AVEK and Film i Skåne, between a documentary and a short film.
Under Construction
Under Construction by Markus Toivo
Under Construction, (Wanha Markku), Markus Toivo, 61' min, Finland, 2023.
Motivation:
“Magnificently cinematic and poetic, this film opens the gate, both physical and metaphorical, on the silence and loneliness that endures between fathers and sons. At times so painful, and at others laugh out loud joyous. Markus Toivo gently leads us trough themes around masculinity, inter-generational trauma and the limitations of patriarchy in his brilliant film Wanha Markku.”

Synopsis:
Markku built a house for his family with his bare hands. Like a real man is meant to do, working hard from dawn to dusk so that his seven children would have a roof over their heads. But it was too much and Markku burned out. He felt he had to leave his family and disappear abroad.

About the director:
Markus Toivo (born 1992, Finland) has graduated from ECAM, the film school of Madrid, Spain, where he majored in film directing. Markus works both in fictional and documentary films. Under Construction (Wanha Markku) is his first feature length film.

About the award:
The New Nordic Voice Award introduces promising Nordic filmmakers. Their work has not previously been screened in the Nordisk Panorama Film Festival competition programme, and the selected films are among the first releases by the filmmaker.

About the jury.
 
New Nordic Voice
Prelude
Prelude by Arman Zafari
Prelude, (Murtuma), Arman Zafari, 19' min, Finland, 2023.
Motivation:
“In a mere 19 minutes this fiction short made us jurors look deep within ourselves and what it means to strive for perfection. Perhaps it takes a young filmmaker to probe taboos around middle class motherhood. Fine lead performances in this beautifully structured film makes Arman Zafari’s Prelude an exciting new Nordic voice.”

Synopsis:
Helena is having an evening with her family when a stranger knocks at the door. A man confronts her with accusations about her perfect family. Helena drives the man away, but a seed of doubt has been planted.

About the director:
Arman Zafari (born 2001, Afghanistan) came to Finland in 2016 as a refugee and studies film directing at the Aalto University. Before moving to Finland, he lived in Iran as an undocumented migrant. Having spent most of his time at home with fear of deportation, he found a safe space with films. Prelude is his graduation film.

About the award:
The New Nordic Voice Award introduces promising Nordic filmmakers. Their work has not previously been screened in the Nordisk Panorama Film Festival competition programme, and the selected films are among the first releases by the filmmaker.

About the jury.
 
Nordic Documentary Producer Award
Stina Gardell
Stina Gardell, Sweden.

Motivation:
“With unique determination, tenacity and assurance, Stina Gardell has developed world class Swedish documentaries for years. With consistent artistic vision and penchant for tuning into what the audiences are interested in, she has created a strong signature brand. Stina has contributed immensely to the Swedish documentary field with films like I am IngridThe World’s Most Beautiful Boy and The Nun.”
About the director:
Stina Gardell is one of Sweden's most meritorious documentary filmmakers, educated at the Stockholm Academy of Dramatic Arts, and with her own Stockholm-based company Mantaray Film as a base for a solid production of award-winning documentary films. Stina has produced 28 feature documentaries and co-produced 9, and has received a number of prestigious film awards e.g. Guldbaggen, Kristallen, Ikaros and Silverfjärilen.

About the award:
The Nordic Documentary Producer Award is our newest award category created to acknowledge the invaluable role of the producer within documentary filmmaking. One producer from each of the five Nordic countries has been nominated based on work completed within the previous five years.

Prize:
The cash award of 10.000 € is sponsored by Danish Producers’ Association, Virke Norwegian Producers Association, Audiovisual Producers Finland (APFI), the Finnish Documentary Guild, Filmproducenternas Rättighetsförening (FRF), and the Icelandic Filmmakers Association.
 
Young Nordic Award
Brouillarta
Brouillarta by Ingvild Søderlind
Brouillarta, (Brouillarta), Ingvild Søderlind, 15' min, Norway, 2023.
Synopsis:
Elliot, a ten-year-old Norwegian, is spending summer with his grandparents in the Basque country in France. He struggles to fit in and feels different from his sharp-witted French cousins. In a mystical village amid brutal landscape, his anxiety grows. And who is Brouillarta?

About the director:
Ingvild Søderlind (born 1975, Norway) is a prizewinning director and scriptwriter. Her breakthrough short Jenny premiered in the 2011 Berlinale. Søderlind has directed films with young and strong female leads, often challenging the depiction of female sexuality and defying stereotypical conceptions. Søderlind has also made short films with her own children as actors, depicting, with a dark undertone, the complex love between siblings. Søderlind directs with an awareness of social status and living conditions, but portrays them with beauty and tenderness, often dreamy and subjective in its point of view.

About the award:
The 11 films in the Young Nordic programme compete for the love of our most critical audience. The festival's youngest viewers are asked which of the films in this category they like the best, and the competition title with the most votes is then awarded.

Prize:
The cash award of 1.500 € is sponsored by Nordisk Panorama Film Festival and will be awarded in honour of BUFF, the International Children and Young People’s Film Festival in Malmö, as a celebration of their 40-year anniversary.
 
City of Malmö's Audience Award
The Home Game
The Home Game by Smari Gunnarsson & Logi Sigursveinsson
The Home Game, (Heimaleikurinn), Smari Gunnarsson & Logi Sigursveinsson, 79' min, Iceland, 2023.
Synopsis:
An impulsive Icelander wants to fulfil his father’s failed dream: to get their beloved fishing village a home game on the unused football pitch he built. A team of underdogs registers for a prestigious men’s tournament. The team includes a fisherman and his son, a church warden – and a mother of three. But when her inclusion threatens to disqualify them, a sequence of events produces an unlikely female hero.

About the directors:
Smari Gunnarsson (born 1985, Iceland) is an Icelandic writer and director, a self-proclaimed football specialist – who loves the game as well as finding the sense of humour in every good story. After receiving a BA training in European Theatre Arts, Smari began creating his own work and further honed his writing skills in the UK through initiatives at The NFTS and BFI Network. The Home Game, screening in competition at Nordisk Panorama, is Smari's first feature length film.

Logi Sigursveinsson (born 1995, Iceland) studied screenwriting and directing at the Icelandic Film School. In 2018 his graduation film Bjarnarblus won best film at Northern Wave Film Festival in Iceland. Logi works freelance as a cinematographer, editor and vfx artist. The Home Game, screening in competition at Nordisk Panorama, is Logi's first feature length film.

About the award:
To receive the City of Malmö’s Audience Award at Nordisk Panorama Film Festival is among the finest appreciations a filmmaker can get. The audience can vote for any of the Nordic short films and documentaries competing in the main competition programmes. The award goes to the director(s) of the winning film.

Prize:
The cash award of 2.500 € is sponsored by the City of Malmö.
 
 
 
 
 


Read more / Ls mere

Categories: Festival, Articles/Reviews ENGLISH

Carl Olsson Conversation at M7

Written 17-09-2023 11:34:57 by Tue Steen Mller

”Vintersaga” was shown the other day at the Magnificent7 Festival in Belgrade. Scandinavian (born in Sweden, educated and living in Denmark) Olsson had been in Belgrade in 2020 for the festival before with “Patrimonium” about the Danish aristocracy and their way of living.

“Vintersaga” is a look at “my home country” as he said on the stage. A description of a state of mind, maybe the state of a nation. Funny but also dark, sometimes mean, a film that could not have been made by a Dane. He said it himself, Olsson, it is seen from inside and from outside. A mixture. The inspiration from Roy Andersson is clear, and I wonder how the reaction will be when the film is released in cinemas in Sweden in October. Andersson was met with silence when he presented the short film “World of Glory” (“Dejlig er Jorden”) at the Gothenburg Film Festival. The audience did not like the satirical approach to Sweden. But there were few objections when he took back one award after the other at prestigious festivals like Venice.

Let´s see – Olsson is obviously a great talent and he will grow, I am sure. Because of his visual talent and originality.

In the conversation he had at the festival with a small group of people, he showed on his computer, how he sketched all scenes precisely and talked about how he set up some rules for shooting the scenes, rules that he broke down on several occasions.

With his protagonists he never told them what to say, just sketched out the content – there is a wonderful three part scene of two men drinking beer, where one of them constantly praises the other – or himself – saying words like “you can always come to me”, “come to my hotel you are not going to pay” and in the end scene, the third of them, “the other” sits alone. It is hilarious, and mean. And in a poetic three part sequence of a house near trains that are passing by – first we see the house at night, when the lights are turned off, then an old lady inside the house is doing puzzles with the train passing by and then the snow-covered house. Loneliness depicted precisely. Olsson should definitely develop that side of his talent.

Is he a documentarist? Does not matter, he is a Filmmaker, who “wants to control”, “the more control the more authenticity”. “The trivial is what I like”, “I want to keep it trivial, I don’t want to kill my darlings”. The music raises the trivial – no narration, no development of protagonists.

Melancholy, yes. Dreamlike as festival director Zoran Popovic said, pointing at Hopper, yes. Tableaux as in the films of Danish Jørgen Leth.


Categories: Festival, Articles/Reviews ENGLISH

Luka Popadić: My Swiss Army

Written 17-09-2023 09:55:22 by Tue Steen Mller

This text is written by Magnificent7 Festival directors Svetlana and Zoran Popovic:

This film was created from a unique and unexpected angle, from the experience of the author who is simultaneously a Serbian director and an officer of the Swiss army. It was created to reveal to many that in the land of chocolate, banks and cheese, 150,000 Swiss people have rifles and military equipment in their closets at home.

The surprising, witty, sometimes ironic, touching spirit of this film reveals Switzerland that we do not know through the complexity of situations and reflections of the second generation of immigrants over their own identity in all its changes and differences. The heroes of the film, officers of the Swiss army, whose parents came from Tunisia, Sri Lanka and Serbia, discover how unique amalgams of culture and tradition from the countries of origin are formed in combination with the values of Swiss society and identity. The author, who was a proud rapper before becoming a soldier, creates a dynamic, playful documentary form and in different ways, both as a narrator telling his personal story and following the brilliantly chosen heroes, tries to discover what it really means to be Swiss. Through a series of often amusing situations, we gradually begin to understand how a banker or an engineer the next moment becomes an officer and thinks about commanding clercks, professors, farmers also instantly turned into soldiers. While in the alpine landscape, cows watch the passing of the army, we discover that the film discreetly questions the meaning of the army in modern Switzerland and offers unexpected answers.

A great documentary that constantly surprises us with unprecedented scenes and connections and abundantly revealing story about modern Europe.

Switzerland, Serbia 2023, 77 minutes


Categories: Festival, Articles/Reviews ENGLISH

Christopher Morris: A Year in the Field

Written 16-09-2023 09:29:34 by Tue Steen Mller

This text is written by the festival directors of the Magnificent7 Festival in Belgrade:

BAFTA awarded English author Christopher Morris makes one of the most unusual, artistically superior works of creative documentaries in this year. A film that invites you to forget the usual narrative constructions, to forget the almost obligatory anthropocentric events and surrender to the deep primordial rhythm that pulsates the planet.

Everywhere countless people experience the profound tragic destruction of the world and nature, and at the same time despair because of their powerlessness to oppose it. This is a magnificent film of true hope, which introduces us to time courses wider and more comprehensive than human time, which the author's voice only occasionally reminds us of. The film is a bold and uncompromising intention for one lone voice and one brilliant documentary to bravely confront the dark forces of destruction. The author takes us to a unique place in western Cornwall, in the very south of England, where a solitary monolith about 4000 years old stands in a picturesque landscape as a witness of time in its cyclical movement through the seasons. Like in Kubrick's cult film "2001 A Space Odyssey" we perceive this monolith as the presence of some, unknown to our world, intelligence capable of transmitting the impulses of change. Through shots of magnificent beauty, the film follows a life cycle of the field between two winter solstices. We immerse ourselves in the divine beauty of nature shaped by transcendent forces. In a sophisticated way the passionate observer films changes of the ubiquitous life and light during one annual cycle delicately introducing a pace that we have forgotten by separating ourselves from nature. In the magical moments of immersion in the enchanting and opaque world to which we belong, the author amazingly creates an experience of the rhythm of time in which the long and slow beats of the universe and the primeval pulsate.

This is a healing time capsule where we can pause and reflect in order to find our way out of the general rush of the world.

Great Britain 2023 86 minutes



Categories: Festival, Articles/Reviews ENGLISH

Carl Olsson: Vintersaga

Written 15-09-2023 09:23:04 by Tue Steen Mller

This text is written by Magnificent7 Festival directors Svetlana and Zoran Popovic:

A magnificent visual poem by the young Scandinavian director Karl Olsson, the author of a unique style, that enchanted the audience at "The Magnificent Seven" in his exceptional "Patrimonium". In "Vintersaga", he develops and perfects his directing even more by creating impressive sights captured by long, firmly fixed, visually complex one shot scenes with participants trapped in time and space.

"Vintersaga" is a Swedish song from the eighties known throughout Scandinavia, a kind of Sweden's melancholic winter anthem. Carl Olsson transposes the lyrics of the song into 24 scenes shot all over Sweden during a long, dark winter. This remarkable fresco of the country and people, trapped by cold and melancholy, develops into a masterfully created collective portrait of a nation in the widest range of generations, social classes, events and sceneries. As the film unfolds in front of us, it discreetly but increasingly becomes a modern visual Scandinavian fairy tale about a snow-covered kingdom where time stands still. Observed always from a precisely chosen distance, with an intense, deeply pulsating rhythm, these enchanting scenes draw us into that melancholic world and the gloomy states of the Nordic soul in the darkness of endlessly long nights. But this observation does not escape a refined feeling for social analysis and the weight of existential questions about the meaning of everything. The author's elegance and flawless visual process integrate a deep understanding of people who are in front of the camera, filled with the feeling of being free to be who they are.

The verses of the chorus of the cult "Vintersaga" are silently present in the strange, enchanting, disturbing scenes: "It is then the big melancholy rolls in, and from the ocean blows an icy, bleak wind."

Sweden, Denmark 2023
81 minutes


Categories: Festival, Articles/Reviews ENGLISH

Michael Graversen: Mr. Graversen

Written 14-09-2023 09:38:06 by Tue Steen Mller

This text is written by Magnificent7 festival directors Svetlana and Zoran Popovic:

A stunning intrusion of the camera into "life not ready for filming", brilliant cinéma vérité, a superb documentary that is created before the eyes of the viewers through the constant interaction of the author and the participants.

Michael Graversen takes us on a long journey to the places of his childhood and with a camera, breaks into his parents' house unannounced. And while we as viewers are still surprised by the author's intrusion and the confusion of the father, Mr. Graversen, and the bewilderment of the delighted mother who is trying to clean up the mess in front of the camera, the author decides to, ignoring the unprepared parents, reach his true hidden goal. Father and mother are together, but they live separate lives and everything seems a bit bleak and irreparable. Long ago, when their son was a boy, life changed suddenly and dramatically for them. For several years, the boy hovered between life and death, and that unbearable threat of a tragic outcome completely separated the parents and almost extinguished their relationship. This film is a story of attempts at understanding and reconciliation, but it is also an exciting testimony to the magnificent power of documentary film. Thanks to the rarely seen healing presence of the camera, a new inner space for change opens before the father and mother. Mr. Graversen allows himself to show his love for his wife again and for the two of them to walk the path of healing their suffering and bitterness together. This film is a double victory for the author - the realization of the dream of every child in the world - that the love of a father and mother creates a home, and the fulfillment of the dream of a dedicated documentarian - to honestly touch real life with a camera and film.

A witty, emotional and unique testimony about deep family ties, but also about the process in which film and reality are mutually shaped. A great documentary manifesto!

Denmark, 81 mins., 2022


Categories: Festival, Articles/Reviews ENGLISH

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