S.Neuenschwander-Gindrat:Schneeweisse Schwarznasen

You watch this film with a smile on your face. You do so because you like the characters and you like them because the director likes them and is able to convey her feelings to the audience. We meet them with warmth and sympathy.

The scene is the Swiss Alps, the village is Eggerberg and the characters are blacknose sheep breeders, whose culture, way of living and relation to the modern world of efficient profitmaking does not give them a chance to live from the sheep. It’s a hobby or an addiction as Reinhold Bittel, the most charismatic of them says, he who like the others have a job in town to earn money for the survival of the family. It’s idyllic but it’s also work, work, work, and several members of the younger generations have already declared that they have other hobbies. And no sheep smell for me.

The woman is responsible for inside, the man for outside… The film also focuses on family relations, the attitudes to what a good life could be. The wife of Reinhold, a wonderful woman, would have loved to travel but it never went that way and the week they went for Austria was hard for him, he was homesick from the very first moment!

The documentary – basically a one-woman’s work – is classical in the way that it takes us to a place and a culture that we (I) did not know existed, it shows some extraordinarily beautiful animals, it gives us, no it shows us how a working day and year develop, and we get to know some people, who like the rest of us are looking for a good and peaceful life. We learn and we experience, what else do you want?

Succesful in Swiss cinemas, travelled to many festivals. First name of director (not space enough in the headline): Sylviane.

Switzerland, 2006, 86 mins.


Share your love
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.

Articles: 3870