Michael Graversen: Mr. Graversen

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

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Tue Steen Müller
Tue Steen Müller

Müller, Tue Steen
Documentary Consultant and Critic, DENMARK

Worked with documentary films for more than 20 years at the Danish Film Board, as press officer, festival representative and film consultant/commissioner. Co-founder of Balticum Film and TV Festival, Filmkontakt Nord, Documentary of the EU and EDN (European Documentary Network).
Awards: 2004 the Danish Roos Prize for his contribution to the Danish and European documentary culture. 2006 an award for promoting Portuguese documentaries. 2014 he received the EDN Award “for an outstanding contribution to the development of the European documentary culture”. 2016 The Cross of the Knight of the Order for Merits to Lithuania. 2019 a Big Stamp at the 15th edition of ZagrebDox. 2021 receipt of the highest state decoration, Order of the Three Stars, Fourth Class, for the significant contribution to the development and promotion of Latvian documentary cinema outside Latvia. In 2022 he received an honorary award at DocsBarcelona’s 25th edition having served as organizer and programmer since the start of the festival.
From 1996 until 2005 he was the first director of EDN (European Documentary Network). From 2006 a freelance consultant and teacher in workshops like Ex Oriente, DocsBarcelona, Archidoc, Documentary Campus, Storydoc, Baltic Sea Forum, Black Sea DocStories, Caucadoc, CinéDOC Tbilisi, Docudays Kiev, Dealing With the Past Sarajevo FF as well as programme consultant for the festivals Magnificent7 in Belgrade, DOCSBarcelona, Verzio Budapest, Message2Man in St. Petersburg and DOKLeipzig. Teaches at the Zelig Documentary School in Bolzano Italy.

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