Scandinavian Film Festival L.A. (SFFLA) is a yearly showcase of films from Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden. The purposely non-competitive festival constitues an “annual residency of Nordic film in the film capital of the world” giving Los Angeles audiences an opportunity to immerse themselves in the representative “best” of Nordic film making in any given year. In the Los Angeles winter “film season” build up to many awards including the Academy Awards, the festival pivots around screenings of “Oscar” submissions and current feature films along with selected shorts and documentaries.
The thirteenth annual Scandinavian Film Festival L.A. continues in the Writers Guild Theater, Beverly Hills, this weekend: January14-15, 2012. The yearly showcase of Nordic films and filmmakers, launched in 2000, screens the year’s Scandinavian films submitted to the Academy as nominees for Best Foreign-Language Film as well as other current feature, documentary, and short films. All screenings will be held at Writers Guild Theater – 135 South Doheny – Beverly Hills.
Saturday. January 14
A JOURNEY IN MY MOTHER’S FOOTSTEPS
The life of 75- year old Jessie Rosenmeier has been an extraordinary one dedicated to the education, safety, and quality of life of over 400 children in India. Following a life-changing personal tragedy, Jessie earnestly began a lifetime commitment to the welfare and international adoption of children in third world countries working with visionaries such as Mother Teresa.
Either Way is a subtle and playful dramatic comedy. In the remote north of Iceland in the mid 1980s, Finn and Alfred, two employees of the Icelandic Road Administration, spend the summer painting lines on the winding roads that stretch out to the horizon. With no-one but each other for company, the barren wilderness becomes a place of adventure, disaster and discovery as both men find themselves at crossroads in their lives.
At last Finnish cinema gives us a heroine – a strong woman, one who takes her place, if no place is offered to her. Every Finn knows the characters of Hella Wuolijoki´s Niskavuori plays, but the eventful life of the author is less known to many. Writer Outi Nyytäjä and director Juha Wuolijoki´s journey into Hella´s past makes the story of the famous playwright, politician and businesswoman familiar to all.
THE GOOD SON
After an unlucky and scandalous premiere the actress Leila escapes to the family summerhouse by the lake. The peaceful holiday with her two sons Ilmari and Unto is disrupted when Leila invites some friends over for a rowdy weekend. After the party, Leila asks the charismatic and unpredictable writer Aimo to stay for a few days. But her 19 year-old son Ilmari who has a very close relationship with his mother, at times acting as her personal bodyguard, is hostile to Aimo.
ERIKA & SALLY
Once you’re cast in the role of family member, chances are you’re stuck for life. Or can family roles be negotiated? – reversed? This is the question troubled sisters Erika and Sally battle at dawn outside their mother’s hospital room.
A RATIONAL SOLUTION
A tragicomic drama about active church member and paper mill worker Erland Fjellgren, who is suddenly overcome with a wild passion: he falls in love with his best friend’s wife. His rational solution – for everyone concerned to sit down, discuss the situation and then all try to live together in his and his wife’s house – sets them on a fateful course that threatens to plunge them all into the abyss
Sunday. January 15
WOMEN WITH COWS
Peter Gerdehag follows up his highly acclaimed The Horseman with Kokvinnorna. Big sister Britt loves cows; little sister Inger doesn’t share her enthusiasm. They milk their cows by hand, quarrel and fall out over them. But as sisters they feel obliged to stick together.
A newly immigrated Italian couple are waiting for the train at the station in small town Jumirim, Sao Paulo, Brazil. Instead of the train ride they are taken on a totally unexpected journey.
In a Copenhagen hotel, disparate lives intersect through accident or fate: A stewardess desperate for intimacy. An immigrant obsessed with revenge. A hotel manager lost in despair. A wife abandoned by her husband. A receptionist with blood on his hands. People meet in the intimacy of hotel rooms, secrets are revealed and unexpected events merge into a dramatic tale of love and longing.
9 year old Liv feels left out when her dad organizes a house warming party for his new boyfriend. She decides to teach the grown-ups a lesson they will not soon forget. A strong girl sends a strong message and gets her way.
PRIEST OF EVIL
Detective Sergeant Timo Harjunpää of the Helsinki Violent Crimes Unit is an honest and conscientious cop who loses his daughter in tragic circumstances. Despite the support he receives from his colleague, Constable Onerva Nykänen, Harjunpää is unable to recover from his loss. While he looks for a way to assasinate his daughter´s killer, he works on various cases involving strange deaths at Helsinki´s metro stations, eventually determining them to be serial killings. But while he seems to get closer to the killer, the killer is actually getting closer to him. Harjunpää must find the murderer and as he tracks him down, Harjunpää encounters an overwhelming darkness both within himself and without.
Roger is a man who seems to have it all: he is Norway’s most successful Headhunter, married to the beautiful gallery-owner Diana, owns a magnificent villa – but living larger than he should. To keep up he is stealing art on the side. At a gallery opening, his wife introduces him to Clas Greve. Not only is he the perfect candidate for the CEO position Roger is currently recruiting for; he is also in possession of a very valuable painting. Roger sees his chance to become financially independent, and starts planning his biggest hit ever. He soon runs into trouble – and it’s not financial problems that are threatening to knock him over this time. The headhunt has begun.
A vital musical film about being who you are and loving who ever you want.
THE SOUND OF NOISE
A gang of eccentric drummers enacts a musical assault on the city, playing on anything but common instruments. Police officer Warnebring is put in charge of the strange case. But his chase of the serial musical terrorists will soon turn into a more personal vendetta.
A follow-up to the short film Music for One Apartment and Six Drummers screened at SFFLA in 2002.
Parent organization of Scandinavian Film Festival is the American Scandinavian Foundation of Los Angeles. Support for the festival includes individuals, organizations, and corporate sponsorship, with the assistance of The Danish Film Institute, Swedish Film Institute, the Norwegian Film Institute, the Finnish Film Foundation, and the Icelandic Film Centre. The festival is proud to partner with ELMA—European Languages and Movies in America, the Barbro Osher Pro Suecia Foundation, SWEA (Swedish WomenÊ¼s Educational Association), the Royal Norwegian Consulate, and the Finnish Consulate, with help from the local honorary Danish, Swedish, Norwegian, and Icelandic Consulates in the concerted effort to bring Nordic film culture to the Los Angeles/Hollywood cultural scene.
For further information, and a complete schedule of all films and events, and information on becoming a donor or purchasing tickets, log on to www.sffla.net or www.scandinavianfilmfestivalla.com or call 323-661-4273