Dragon Award Best Nordic Documentary
The Dragon Award Best Nordic Documentary is Göteborg International Film Festival’s new film prize for the best Nordic documentary. The winner will be presented at the Dragon Awards Gala on Saturday, February 2.
The nominees are:
Finnish Blood, Swedish Heart
Directed by: Mika Ronkainen (Sweden/Finland)
Kai, a son in his forties, asks his father Tauno to drive him from Oulu in Northern Finland all the way down to Gothenburg in Southern Sweden to revisit the places they lived in back in the 1970’s—from Kai’s childhood until he was a teenager. The journey of a father and son turns into a musical trip into the emotional memory and the history of Finnish immigration in Sweden; of shame, guilt, crime, alcoholism, and family secrets.
Forest of the Dancing Spirits
Directed by: Linda Västrik (Sweden)
Ever since her debut film, Father and I, (GIFF 2000) Linda Västrik has in periods lived together with pygmy tribes in the tropical rain forest in the Congo River Basin. They are hunter-gatherers and their religion is one of the oldest in the world. The film is a unique document of the people and how they deal with difficulties like the fact that the entire future of the tribe is threatened by international forest companies. The film is recorded on rich 16 millimetre film, which gives an almost physical experience of being surrounded by the green, steamy vegetation.
Directed by: Stefan Jarl (Sweden)
Well-renowned Swedish director Stefan Jarl is back, taking the pulse of our time. In this new movie he outlines what he calls “the loss of the shared”—which has been taken over by greed, selfishness, the worship of Mammon, the return of the upper class, bonuses, venture capitalists and privatisation of the public sphere, the emergence of a new class society with growing inequality, exclusion and increasing violence. Is everything for sale? The Goodness is an implacable indictment of today’s social climate.
Directed by: Mia Engberg (Sweden)
Documentary filmmaker Mia Engberg’s work often has an investigative nature. In the project Dirty Diaries (2009) she examined the possibilities for alternative porn. Her new film Belleville Baby is a poetic depiction of a personal history. All of the sudden she hears from her ex-boyfriend Vincent, who has been missing for ten years. He has been in prison and now asks Mia to help him remember their time together. The film weaves together recorded phone calls with video images from the couple’s time together, stills from now and then and also newly shot sequences. The atmosphere demonstrates how memories are completely subjective. The question is whether it’s possible to have a close relationship without using the other for your own purposes.
Directed by: Margreth Olin (Norway)
In 2009, the Norwegian government introduced several measures to restrict immigration. One of the measures is to grant temporary residence permits to unaccompanied children seeking asylum. At the age of 18, they are to be returned to their country of origin.
Black White Boy
Directed by: Camilla Magid (Denmark)
Shida is the new kid in class in a private boarding school in Tanzania. He is shy, he has no self-esteem, he does not speak one word of English (the school’s primary language) and he suffers from albinism. Like most children with albinism in the country, Shida was taken away from his parents to be protected from the witchcraft-related killings.
The film follows Shida during his first year at the new school where the rules are strict and tolerance low. He tries his best to meet the demands. The school offers the chance of an education and an escape from a life at the bottom of society. With the help from his new friend Allan he struggles to become better in school and to be accepted by the teachers and pupils.
My Afghanistan – Life in the forbidden zone
Directed by: Nagieb Khaja (Denmark)
Over a period of three years, Afghan civilians have filmed their lives behind the frontier in the war-torn Afghan province of Helmand. They invite us into their homes, their hopes, and their heartbreaks, and their stories form a rich tapestry of an Afghanistan that never makes it to the news. It is Nagieb Khaja, a Danish director of Afghan origin, who has provided them with cameras, as international media seldom leaves the relative security of the cities.
No Burqas Behind Bars
Directed by: Nima Sarvestani (Sweden)
The women we meet in No Burqas Behind Bars in a women’s prison in Afghanistan are lawless. Within the Western purview, they are not criminals, instead they are those who should be protected and praised. They’re fighting, with their lives under threat, to have their rights acknowledged and their voices heard by society. They’re fighting for all the women in the world, who throughout history have been degraded and humiliated by patriarchy.
Nadjibe, Sima and Sara are three of these “criminal” women.
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