Female-Focused Film Series Announced At Scandinavia House
This spring, opening on March 6 in coordination with International Women's Day, ASF puts the focus on female perspectives in film with some of the top new cinema from women filmmakers in Denmark, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden! On Fridays from March 6 through May 15, New Nordic Cinema: Female-Focused presents award-winning films with female leads, ranging from gripping psychological dramas to comedic adventures, across a wide range of styles and tones ranging from family dramedies, to exploring family tragedy through magical realism, to issues surrounding Nordic immigration; as well as three documentaries exploring a range of global cross-cultural subjects.
Films in the series include Britt-Marie Was Here /Britt-Marie var här (directed by Tuva Novotny, Sweden, 2019); Aurora (directed by Miia Tervo, Finland, 2019); That Time of Year /Den tid på året (directed by Paprika Steen, Denmark,2018); Gods of Molenbeek (directed by Reetta Huhtanen, Finland, 2019); Transnistra (directed by Anna Eborn, Sweden, 2019); Agnes Joy (directed by Silja Hauksdóttir, Iceland, 2019); Phoenix /Føniks (directed by Camilla Strøm Henriksen, Norway, 2018); Maria's Paradise (directed by Zaida Bergroth, Finland, 2019); The Deposit /Tryggð (directed by Ásthildur Kjartansdóttir, Iceland, 2019); and The Reformist - A Female Imam /Reformisten (directed by Marie Skovgaard, Denmark, 2019).
The series opens with Britt-Marie Was Here /Britt-Marie var här on March 6. Based on the bestselling novel by Fredrick Backman (A Man Called Ove) and directed by Tuva Novotny, this comedic drama follows the highly organized 63-year-old Britt-Marie who, in the wake of her husband's infidelity, learns to embrace chaos as she begins coaching a hardscrabble children's soccer team (Sweden, 2019). On March 13, Miia Tervo's Aurora looks at the unlikely collaboration between the hard-partying Finnish-Laplander Aurora and Iranian immigrant Darian, as she helps him find a wife to gain asylum in exchange for enough money to start a new life in Norway (Finland, 2019). On March 20, Paprika Steen's That Time of Year /Den tid på året is a quirky ensemble dramedy about a group of descending relatives who descend on the home of their reluctant hosts on Christmas Eve (Denmark, 2018).
On March 27, Reetta Huhtanen's Gods of Molenbeek is a child's-eye documentary following six-year-old Aatos and his friend Amine as they grow up in Molenbeek-Saint-Jean in Brussels; known to the world as a center of jihadism, but known to Aatos and Amine as the familiar home where they discover black holes and fight about flying carpets (Finland, 2019). On April 3, Anna Eborn's documentary Transnistra follows a group of young people navigating their lives in the complex, contradictory world of breakaway state of Transnistria, located on the border between Moldova and Ukraine, where Soviet symbols still remain on the national flag (Sweden, 2019)
On April 17, in Silja Hauksdóttir's Agnes Joy, a dissatisfied mother and her rebellious daughter find their open conflict in uncharted territory when a handsome screenwriter comes to town and charms them both (Iceland, 2019). In Phoenix /Føniks on April 24, 14-year-old Jill copes with caring for her brother and her mentally unstable mother, as her estranged father offers a hope for much-needed stability, in a film directed by Camilla Strøm Henriksen (Norway, 2018).
On May 1, based on the true story of the charismatic preacher Maria Åkerblom, Zaida Bergroth's Maria's Paradise follows Salome, one of Maria's devoted followers in 1920s Helsinki, who is torn between her faith and her desire for freedom after befriending local street girl Malin (Finland, 2019). On May 8, The Deposit /Tryggð, directed by Ásthildur Kjartansdóttir and based on the bestselling novel Auður Jónsdóttir, explores the perils of cultural isolation through the story of Giselle, a debt-ridden journalist, who decides to rent out her spare bedrooms to two immigrant women only for events to spiral out of control (Iceland, 2019).
On May 15, the series closes with a screening of Marie Skovgaard's documentary The Reformist - A Female Imam /Reformisten, which follows Sherin Khankan as she works to open the Mariam mosque in Copenhagen, one of Europe's first mosques run by female imams, and runs a campaign to challenge Islamophobia while calling for a new feminist agenda (Denmark, 2019).
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