Best Nordic Film goes to In Your Arms

It was the Danish director, Samanou Acheche Sahlstrøm, who took home the Dragon Award Best Nordic Film from the gala on Saturday evening.

Below you’ll find all the winners who were awarded at the Dragon Award gala.


In Your Arms (I dina hænder), directed by Samanou Acheche Sahlstrøm, won the festival’s grand award Dragon Award Best Nordic Film. The award’s presenting partner is the Ernström Group and the prize sum is one million SEK.

Lisa Carlehed plays the role Maria, attendant nurse to the mortally ill Niels as he travels to a clinic in Switzerland where he can commit assisted suicide.

The jury’s motivation: 
The award goes to a film, that with honest sensitivity, brings up the questions: When is life worth living? When is life not worth living? 
Told in a pure language, with poetic moments, and with an acting that is vibrating of human authenticity.
A film that ends with death – but also with life, love and hope. 
The winner of The Dragon Award Best Nordic Film is In Your Arms by Samanou Acheche Sahlstrøm.

This year’s jury consisted of the actor Maryam Moghaddam and the directors Pernille Fischer Christensen, Pirjo Honkasalo, Anja Breien and Benedikt Erlingsson. 



This year’s Dragon Award for best documentary has been awarded to Joshua Oppenheimer for The Look of Silence. The award has been handed out in cooperation with Telia. 

The Look of Silence is the follow-up to the Oscar-nominated The Act of Killing, in which Joshua Oppenheimer continues recounting the genocide of suspected communists in Indonesia in the 1960s.

The jury’s motivation:
The award goes to a film which breaks the barriers between documentary and fiction, by opening up space for a performance of history. Using the camera to confront memories, and inspire reconciliation, this film's look at the tragical past shapes a nation's view of the future. The Dragon Award Best Nordic documentary goes to The look of silence by Joshua Oppenheimer.

This year’s jury consisted of Ossama Mohammed (director), Linde Frölich (artistic director at Nordic Film Days Lübeck), Jacob Lundström (film critic and journalist) and Gabriela Pichler (director). 



This year’s Ingmar Bergman award for best debut has been awarded The Lesson (Urok) by Petar Valchanov and Kristina Grozeva.

This film is about a small town teacher Nadezhda, who, when she and her husband run into economic troubles, are forced to deviate from their high moral ambitions. Read more here. 

The jury's motivation:
I, as the Jury President for this program, was strongly attracted to how this film depicts elaborately of the human psychology and emotional flows of the main character, who were put in the difficult situations of life that possibly anyone could face.
Together with the rhythm created in the process of editing, the way it incorporates natural light, and the outstanding performance that are naturally presented on screen, I believe this film has achieved the quality one could hardly believe that this is the first feature film.
As an achievement of this film, I value the fact that the film eagerly seeks for, shares, and presents what’s true to us as audience.
With the hope for the filmmakers’ further exploration in their own approach to cinema, this year’s Ingmar Bergman’s Debut Award goes out to The Lesson by Petar Valchanov and Kristina Grozeva.

This year’s jury consisted of Naomi Kawase (director), Gust van den Berghe (director) and Mads Mikkelsen (programmer at CPH:DOX). 



This year the Sven Nykvist Cinematography Award has been awarded to Pietari Peltola for They Have Escaped (He ovat paenneet).

The jury’s motivation: 
The award goes to a powerful, daring and cinematic language, with the courage to combine dream and reality and break the rules of classical story telling. In a film where you truly feel the cinematographer and director speaking the same language, with the same energy. 
The winner of Sven Nykvist Cinematography Award is Pietari Peltola for the cinematography in They Have Escaped.

The award jury consisted of the actor Maryam Moghaddam and the directors Pernille Fischer Christensen, Pirjo Honkasalo, Anja Breien and Benedikt Erlingsson



This year’s FIPRESCI award went to Samanou Acheche Sahlstrøm for In Your Arms (I dina hænder). The prize is handed out by the International Federation of Film Critics and goes to one of the films in the competition Dragon Award Best Nordic Film. 

The jury's motivation:
The FIPRESCI jury is proud to give the award to In Your Arms, for its deep understanding of human behaviour; its ability to project strong emotions without being sentimental in a heavy story, and for the great focus in its structure built on two characters, depicted by powerful acting performances.

The jury included Ulrich Wimmeroth, Yesim Tabakand, Luuk Imhann. 
Read more about the feature above. 


Min lilla syster (My Skinny Sister), directed by Sanna Lenken (Sweden), won this year’s Dragon Award Best Nordic Film Audience Choice.

The film is about two sisters, what happens when parents are preoccupied with their own projects and what happens when the older sister Katja feels worse and worse—all seen through the eyes of the younger sister Stella. 



In the Crosswind (Risttuules) by Martti Helde (Estonia), won the public choice award for this year’s best feature film. 

The film is about how thousands of people around the Baltic were arrested and removed to work camps in Siberia during the summer of 1941. 

Awards that have already been handed out:

This year the Nordic Honorary Dragon Award went to Liv Ullmann who accepted it at the opening ceremony on January 23.

This year’s winner of Best Swedish Short was John Skoog for the film Reduit. The public choice award for best short film went to Amanda Kernell for her film Northern Great Mountain. The short film awards were handed out at the Best Swedish Short gala on January 25.

The Swedish Church’s Angelos Award went to Every Face Has a Name, directed by Magnus Gertten and was handed out at the film’s world premiere on Wednesday, January 29.

The City of Gothenburg Award was awarded to Force Majeure. Producer Marie Kjellson accepted the award at the festival’s opening ceremony on January 23. 

The Mai Zetterling Scholarschip with a prize sum of 200,000 SEK went to Måns Månsson and was also handed out at the festival’s opening ceremony.

This year’s DORIS award was given to Stina Gardell at a screening on Saturday.