GÖTEBORG, Sweden — Norwegian helmer-writer Dag Johan Haugerud’s “Beware Of Children,” a complex, almost novelistic examination of how people reveal their true colors under pressure when crisis strikes, came away the biggest winner at the 43rd Göteborg Film Festival, scoring the generously endowed ($104,000) best Nordic film prize.
The film’s lead actress, Henriette Steenstrup, also nabbed the fest’s award for best actor for her role as a compromised school principal at a Göteborg Film Festival prize ceremony which took place Saturday night.
The endearing Swedish film “Uje,” from debuting feature director Henrik Schyffert, also claimed two prizes: the Fipresci critics’ nod and the audience choice award for a film in the Nordic competition. Popular musician and radio host Uje Brandelius, who wrote the script and most of the film’s songs, stars along with his real-life family in a creative, meta-fiction version of his life.
Norwegian DoP Marius Matzow Gulbrandsen claimed the Sven Nykvist Cinematography Award for his work on “Disco,” directed by Jorunn Myklebust Syversen, which moves between the glittery world of dance competitions and the almost equally extravagant universe of evangelical Christian services.
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Finnish helmers Jussi Rastas and Jenni Kivisto captured the best Nordic documentary title and a purse of $26,000 for “Colombia In My Arms,” a many-voiced portrait of a country in which peace doesn’t seem welcome.
Mexican director-writer David Zonana received the Ingmar Bergman international debut award for “Workforce,” in which a construction worker sets up a squat in a luxury home he’s helped build. Meanwhile, the festival audience voted the best international film title to Québécoise helmer Louise Archambault’s “And The Birds Rained Down.”
Among the most exciting previews shown to industry audiences in the popular works-in-progress strand of the Nordic Film Market were provocative glimpses of Danish helmer Thomas Vinterberg’s “Another Round,” Norwegian director Eskil Vogt’s “The Innocent” and Finnish newcomer Hamy Ramezan’s “Any Day Now.”
Kudos granted earlier in the festival include the Church of Sweden award to Martin Von Krogh’s documentary “Cinema Pameer,” a portrait of everyday life in Kabul, Afghanistan through the lens of the titular movie house; the Mai Zettlering grant to animator Niki Lindroth von Bahr; the Nordisk Film & TV Fond prize for a series to Norwegian showrunner Sara Johnsen for “22 July,” and best Swedish short to “Daddy’s Girl” by Julia Lindström. The audience choice for best Swedish short went to “Index” from Nicolas Kolovos.
(Pictured (top to bottom): “Beware of Children,” “Uje,” “Workforce”)