Films Programs

Nordic Light

This year we salute outstanding productions from the Nordic countries: Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway and Sweden. Our 20-title series, which has something for everyone, encompasses the Academy Award submissions from these nations as well as Inuk from Denmark’s self-governing island Greenland.

For the Nordic territories, 2012 represented an exceptional year marked by well-deserved kudos going to new talent and familiar faces, culminating in Golden Globe nods for both A Royal Affair and Kon-Tiki. At the Berlinale, A Royal Affair claimed awards for best script and best actor for newcomer Mikkel Boe Følsgaard. At Cannes, Folsgaard’s Royal Affair co-star Mads Mikkelsen nabbed the best actor prize for The Hunt, a gripping contemporary morality tale that serves as our Nordic Gala.

In the fall, too, Nordic pictures continued their winning ways, with Eat Sleep Die from debuting director Gabriela Pichler bagging the audience award at Venice Days and many other awards besides. Another debutant, Mikael Marcimain, landed Toronto’s prestigious Discovery Award for his masterful political thriller Call Girl. After screenings in Toronto and Venice, Tobias Lindholm’s hostage drama A Hijacking turned into one of the autumn’s hot buzz titles.

Our own competition, New Voices New Visions, includes the North American premiere of first films by striking new talents Anne-Grethe Bjarup Riis and Dag Johan Haugerud, both of whom will definitely be names to conjure with in the future.

2012 also marked a year in which Swede Lasse Hallström and Dane Bille August returned to their home countries to direct after nearly a quarter century in Hollywood. Another veteran director, Jan Troell, shows that with The Last Sentence he continues to work at the height of his powers.

Fans of Nordic Noir should be sure to check out the droll and grungy caper Jackpot, based on a story by novelist Jo Nesbo, as well as Call Girl and The Hypnotist. Thrills of a different sort may be found in A Caretaker’s Tale.

History buffs will be fascinated by the based-on-real-life A Royal Affair, The Purge, The Last Sentence, The Deep, Kon Tiki, Marie Kroyer and This Life.

For a good laugh, there’s Road North, Either Way, King Curling, Eat Sleep Die and Jackpot. And cinephiles won’t want to miss Liv & Ingmar, a documentary about one of the Nordic countries’ most famous couples.


Call Girl   

Call Girl
Sweden, 2012, 140 min.
Inspired by the 1976 prostitution scandal that led straight to the heart of the Swedish government, Call Girl is a meaty, never sensationalistic political thriller reminiscent of American 70s classics like All the President’s Men. Discovery Prize-winner, Toronto Film Festival.... more



A Caretaker’s Tale   

A Caretaker’s Tale
Denmark, 2011, 85 min.
This provocative parable centers on the bitter custodian of a grim housing complex and the mute, naked woman with healing sexual powers he discovers in an empty apartment. Controversial and sometimes humorous; not for all tastes but certain to generate conversation. Be advised: Explicit material... more



Eat Sleep Die   

Eat Sleep Die
Sweden, 2012, 104 min.
Nermina Lukac shines as a young Muslim who struggles to maintain her self respect when she’s laid off from work in this starkly impressive first feature from Sweden.... more



Either Way   

Either Way
Iceland, 2011, 85 min.
Two highway maintenance men in 1980s Iceland find themselves at a literal and figurative crossroads in this beguiling character-driven dramedy that uses the harshly beautiful landscape as a principal character. Best Film, Torino Film Festival.... more



A Hijacking   

A Hijacking
Denmark, 2012, 110 min.
A fictional but sweatily plausible account of a Danish cargo ship ambushed by volatile Somali pirates in the Indian Ocean, which alternates between tensions onboard and in the Copenhagen negotiation chamber. Best Film, Thessaloniki; Best Actor, Abu Dhabi; Audience Award, AFI.... more



Jackpot   

Jackpot
Norway, 2011, 90 min.
This black comic caper about four dodgy types who must share a multi-million kronor jackpot unspools at a rollicking pace. Based on a story by best-selling Nordic crime writer Jo Nesbo.... more



King Curling   

King Curling
Norway, 2011, 75 min.
Evoking comparisons to The Big Lebowski and the films of Wes Anderson, Ole Endresen’s hilarious debut follows the comeback of a mentally unstable curling champion, turning the tropes of the “sports comeback” movie on their collective heads in the process.... more



The Last Sentence   

The Last Sentence
Sweden, 2012, 125 min.
From the director of PSIFF audience favorite Everlasting Moments comes a dramatic and poetic tale – exquisitely filmed in black and white - about crusading Swedish journalist Torgny Segerstedt and his courageous stand against Fascism during WWII.... more



Marie Krøyer   

Marie Krøyer
Denmark, 2012, 103 min.
An exquisite period romance about the wife of acclaimed Danish painter P.S. Kroyer. At the peak of their marriage, Kroyer’s mental illness becomes more severe and Marie’s dream of a mutually supportive life as artists turns to frustration and sorrow.... more



Road North   

Road North
Finland, 2012, 110 min.
A prodigal father returns to Helsinki to reconnect with the son he abandoned 35 years earlier and con him into a journey towards the Arctic Circle in this jaunty comedy, one of Finland’s biggest box office hits of the past year.... more



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