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Oslo/Reykjavik - Norwegian and Icelandic films at the 18th New Horizons IFF

20/07/18
Arctic, dir. Joe Penna
Małgorzata Sadowska's Top 10 Terry Gilliam, Adina Pintilie and the actors famong the guests

The latest productions from the homeland of Björk and Sigur Rós and films by a young generation of Norwegian artists that have been hits at festivals around the world.

The program for this year's edition of New Horizons includes the Oslo/Reykjavik section, which presents contemporary cinema from Norway and Iceland. The section was created in cooperation with the Polish Ministry of Investment and Development, which coordinates the use of Norwegian and European Economic Area funds from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway in Poland. Among other films, the section includes Joe Penna's Arctic, with a bravura performance by Mads Mikkelsen, as well as Ísold Uggadóttir's And Breathe Normally, which was an award winner at Sundance.

Section program

Joe Penna's Arctic is a thrilling survival drama starring Mads Mikkelsen (from Thomas Vinterberg's The Hunt), who won an award for his performance at Cannes. A bold film driven along by the force of its details, where an extraordinary portrait of the power of nature is blended together with an intimate story about the will to survive.

Jonas Matzow Gulbrandsen's Valley of Shadows (Skyggenes dal) takes on the tradition of dark Norwegian fairy tales in an innovative way. The carefully built atmosphere of danger is helped along by the music of Zbigniew Preisner.

Kristoffer Borglia's DRIB weaves back and forth between a documentary and a feature, creating just the right sort of film for our era of "alternative facts." The film is a playful and hilarious satire on the advertising industry and a penetrating analysis of the sort of manipulation that consumers are exposed to.

Ísold Uggadóttir's And Breathe Normally (Andið eðlilega), an award winner at Sundance, examines, with no illusions, the mechanisms of Icelandic bureaucracy from the point of view of people the rest of society would prefer not to notice. One of the standout features of this poignant story of soulless state institutions and human solidarity is the excellent work of Polish cinematographer Ita Zbroniec-Zajt.

Erik Poppe's U - July 22 (Utøya 22. juli) will keep you glued to your seat throughout the duration. In the film, we follow the tragic course of the "worst day in Norwegian history" only from the perspective of the victims, for 72 minutes-exactly the amount of time the attack by Anders Behring Breivik lasted.

Iram Haq's What Will People Say (Hva vil folk si) gives voice to a generation of young Norwegians who grew up in the shadow of rigid cultural norms cultivated by their parents from Pakistan.

Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurðsson's Under the Tree (Undir trénu)-a multiple-award-winning dramedy driven by the power of the grotesque-is reminiscent of Damián Szifron's Wild Tales.

Thelma is the latest film by one of Norway's most interesting filmmakers, Joachim Trier (Louder Than bombsOslo, August 31st). A disturbing film that gets under your skin in which we watch the eponymous protagonist grow up.

During the festival, Wrocław will play host to several filmmakers and actors from Norway and Iceland, including Joe Penna, the director of Arctic; Jonas Matzow Gulbrandsen, the maker of Valley of Shadows; and Tómas Lemarquis, one of Iceland's most popular actors (Nói AlbinóiBlade Runner 2049), who appears in Adina Pintilie's Touch Me Not. At the Taste, That's Why festival club, we'll have a chance to hear Maja S. K. Ratkje, a Norwegian composer, opera artist and composer of electroacoustic music. Following the concert at Arsenal on 3 August, guests will also have a chance to see a film about Ratkje.

***

Norwegian and EEA funds are a form of financial aid granted for the third time to Poland and other EU countries from Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway. Funds for Poland amounting to EUR 809.3 million will be allocated to projects in areas such as scientific research, education, culture, healthcare, the environment, internal affairs, entrepreneurship and innovation, as well as local development. For more information, visit: www.eog.gov.pl.


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