It's going to be an unforgettable holiday: the Turkish Riveria, drinks with umbrellas and a house with a pool, not to mention great people who like to party. But the face of the young, incredibly attractive Sascha betrays the vigilance and tension hidden beneath her adorable-but seemingly forced-smile. She is a companion for her boss, Michael, who is as likely to give her a lavish gift as he is to beat her up. Violence in this sun-scorched and simultaneously stone-cold film appears in the form of a series of vicious outbreaks, after which everything returns to normal-at least until Sascha meets two guys, one of whom, a lonely sailor named Thomas, reminds her of the existence of a life in which the female body is not a possession or a commodity to be bought and sold or an object of any sort for that matter. Isabella Eklöf's provocative debut is incredibly insightful but not sentimental. Holiday (a hit at the last Sundance Festival) shows how a web of male manipulation, humiliation and benefits, cleverly spread out around the protagonist, produces a kind of siren. Sascha's sweet, melodic voice seduces both sailors and viewers; while we see her as a victim, she fills us with dread at the same time. What sort of darkness lurks inside a person who would sell her soul for a luxury holiday?
IFF New Horizons 2018 – Grand Prix
Born in 1978, Isabella Eklöf is a Swedish director and screenwriter, as well as a writer and translator. She studied Film Studies in Gothenburg and Copenhagen. She has made a dozen or so short films. Her diploma film, Notes From Underground, brought her the prestigious Bisballeprisen prize in Denmark. She worked on the production of the acclaimed Let the Right One In and co-wrote Border,which won a FIPRESCI award at the Cannes Festival.