Scandinavian film is hitting Australia nation-wide with its own festival for the second time.
With its arbitrary stigma, it has become well known for depicting irritable settings and dreary stories of crime, but the programme offers a lot more than those stereotypes could ever describe.
This year’s Scandinavian Film Festival will showcase a slice of the modern film industry from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden, capturing all the genres that make it so diverse – comedy, mystery, drama, romance, biography and documentary – just to name a few.
The 22-film-strong-line-up this year comes loaded with award-winning flare, from a long list of International Film Festival achievements to the best in show at Sundance.
Alongside the deluge of films on offer, opening night attendees in Melbourne can expect a Q&A screening of Underdog, with actress and screenwriter, Bianca Kronlöf.
Underdog is a story about a 23-year-old girl from Sweden and her journey through class, immigration and love. She becomes caught in a destructive loop of bad jobs and poor financial choices until an unexpected job falls into her lap, and with it, sultry perks.
Further highlights of the festival include:
Here is Harold (opening night)
Harold is a small business owner who just got thrown out of competition with the completion of a brand new IKEA, right next door. Quickly becoming destitute and with his wife’s debilitating illness, he seeks revenge and makes way on a plan to kidnap IKEA’s founder, Ingvar Kamprad.
They Have Escaped
A stuttering, introverted boy flees the military service and winds up in a halfway house for troubled youth. During his stay, he encounters a girl more akin to animal than man and together they make their way down the rabbit hole of lawlessness and romance.
A surly, eighty-year-old farmer who refuses to adjust into the modern world finds himself left with no option but to move in with his son and his wife. In the process, both parties discover new and interesting things, but not without a touch of confrontation.
A jovial dance teacher desperately tries to repair issues from her past as she goes on a rollercoaster of emotions, stemming from her mother’s self-absorption. In her pain, she finds comfort in friend’s family, but it all falls apart when a familiar face appears from the blue.
Ingrid Bergman (closing night)
Stig Bjorkman has combined a series of never-before-seen footage and documentation that intimately reveals Ingrid Bergman’s life. The excerpts follow her through the peak years of her career as a Swedish, Hollywood and Italian icon.
The Scandinavian Film Festival begins on 9 July in Melbourne. For more session dates, times and locations, visit the website.