Scandinavian Film Festival, Los Angeles, January 6 & 7 program


19th edition of Scandinavian Film Festival, Los Angeles opens on Saturday January 6th and continues on January 7th, 20th and 21st. Here is the complete program of the festival for its first weekend:

Saturday, January 6
12:00 pm Kayayo, the Living Shopping Baskets (documentary)
(Norway), 2016, 32 minutes, Mari Bakke Riise
In the capital of Ghana, 10,000 girls from the ages of 6 work as real life shopping baskets – called Kayayo, carrying heavy loads on their head (from 130 to 220 pounds), earning very little and some end up in prostitution to make ends meet. This documentary is about Bamunu, an 8-year old girl who hasn’t seen her family since she was sent away from home two years ago to work as a Kayayo to support her family. We follow her incessant longing to get away from the harsh markets, her journey back home and what awaits there

12.45 pm Latvian Short To Be Announced

1:00 pm Chronicles of Melanie (feature)
Melanijas hronika, (Latvia), 2016, 120 minutes, Viesturs Kairišs
The film “The Chronicles of Melanie” is based on the life story of Melānija Vanaga, a Latvian woman who managed to survive her deportation to Siberia. It is a truthful account of the miracle of human character, magnitude of the human spirit and the painful destinies, which were a part of the greatest tragedy facing the Latvian nation. It is the story of Latvian women who had to suffer and survive physically and emotionally in order for Latvia to live.

3:30 pm The Square (Oscar entry)
The Square, (Sweden), 2017, 151 minutes, Ruben Östlund
A modern museum struggles with their visitor numbers and the newly appointed creative director decides to hire a PR agency to help promote the upcoming exhibition called “The Square”. The Square is an elegant and telling satire addressing topics of responsibility and trust.

6:00 pm Opening Gala and Buffet
Food & Drinks to open SFFLA’s 19th Anniversary year!
Purchase a Festival Passport or Gala Pass and join in the festivities.

7:30 pm You Disappear (Oscar entry)
Du forsvinder, (Denmark), 2017, 117 minutes, Peter Schønau Fog
A teachers’ world is turned upside down when her husband, a successful headmaster, is caught embezzling from their own school. Did he do this of his own free will – or has his personality been altered by the tumor lurking in his brain? As the teacher is assisting an attorney in providing a legal defense, recent neuroscience forces her to rethink who her husband really is.

Sunday, January 7
12:00 pm The Dolphin (short)
Delfinen, (Denmark), 2017, 29 minutes, Laurits Munch-Petersen
Anna takes her 7-years old son Robert to the beach to finish his swimming course, the DOLPHIN, but something is terribly wrong and Anna needs to face reality.

1:00 pm November (Oscar entry)
(Estonian), 2017, 115 minutes, Rainer Sarnet
The story is set in a pagan Estonian village where werewolves, the plague, and spirits roam. The villagers’ main problem is how to survive the cold, dark winter. And, to that aim, nothing is taboo. People steal from each other, from their German manor lords, and from spirits, the devil, and Christ. The main character of the film is a young farm girl named Liina who is hopelessly and forlornly in love with a village boy named Hans.

3:15 pm Under the Tree (Oscar entry)
Undir trénu, (Iceland), 2017, 89 minutes, Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurðsson
When Baldwin and Inga’s next door neighbours complain that a tree in their backyard casts a shadow over their sundeck, what starts off as a typical spat between neighbours in the suburbs unexpectedly and violently spirals out of control.

5:00 pm Thelma (feature)
Thelma, (Norway), 2017, 116 minutes, Joachim Trier
A college student starts to experience extreme seizures while studying at a university in Oslo, Norway. She soon learns that the violent episodes are a symptom of inexplicable, and often dangerous, supernatural abilities.

7:30 pm Tom of Finland (Oscar Entry)
Tom of Finland, (Finland), 2017, 116 minutes, Dome Karukoski
Touko Laaksonen, a decorated officer, returns home after a harrowing and heroic experience serving his country in World War II, but life in Finland during peacetime proves equally distressing. He finds peace-time Helsinki rampant with persecution of the homosexual men around him, even being pressured to marry women and have children. Touko finds refuge in his liberating art, specializing in homoerotic drawings of muscular men, free of inhibitions. His work – made famous by his signature ‘Tom of Finland’ – became the emblem of a generation of men and fanned the flames of a gay revolution.


About Author

Bijan Tehrani

Bijan Tehrani a film director, film critic and writer, works as editor in chief of Cinema Without Borders while teaching Language of Film and Film History at workshops nationwide. Bijan has won several awards in international film festivals and book fairs for his short films and children's books.

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