Iceland: Land of Ideals and Volcanos
Do your screen savers flicker with images of fuming Icelandic volcanos? Is it your lifelong dream to travel to the geothermal kingdoms in the middle of unspoiled nature? Are you one of the true fans of the fragile sounds of contemporary Icelandic music? You can discover the original Icelandic nature and culture which has proved many a time that “size doesn’t matter” in the next two weeks at DAFilms.com. Explore Icelandic documentary from June 8 to 21 for free!
The clash between reality and romantic ideals of life at the foot of volcanos in one of the richest countries of today is shown in ASH and ICELAND YEAR ZERO. In the film with the telling title ASH, director Herbert Sveinbjornsson tells the story of three Icelandic families endangered by the Eyjafjallajökull volcano in April 2010. In a few days, the life which had benefited from a close symbiosis with nature became a nightmare in which nature could have taken everything from the people, including their lives. A dramatic change, this time in a social landscape, is depicted in ICELAND YEAR ZERO. The film revisits the year 2008 in which one of the world’s most prosperous countries was struck by an economic crisis leading to the collapse of the banking system. How did the small nation with a singular regenerative power face it? How does it face the dreams of immigrants who decided to come to the promised land? Find out more in the documentary HOUSE OF HOPE.
Remarkable life stories are portrayed in SALÓME and GRANDMA LO-FI. The documentary debut by Yrsa Roca Fannberg SALÓME, the first Icelandic holder of the Best Nordic Documentary Award, captures the difficult situation of a reunion of a mother and a daughter after years of separation. The daughter, who is the director of the documentary, is a dedicated filmmaker trying to capture the personality of the mother, an ill but still active visual artist. While gradually revealing the complicated relationship of the two women, the film introduces the broader topic of the relationship of the author behind the camera and the person in front of it. A unique personality also appears in front of the camera of three musicians and debuting filmmakers in GRANDMA LO-FI. The film follows musician Sigridur Nielsdottir who started composing her first songs in the middle of her living room at the age of seventy; in the course of eight years captured by the documentary, she became a cult personality of Iceland’s young generation.
A strong connection with art is also present in the two films made by the creative duo of Markus Thor Andresson and Ragnheidur Gestsdottir exploring Iceland’s art scene. Over the period of two years, STEYPA follows seven young artists seeking their place in the culturally expanding Reykjavík as well as in the broader society. The latter film, TIME AND TIME AND AGAIN, is dedicated to the world-renowned Icelandic conceptual artist Hreinn Fridfinnsson.
Keep your eyes wide open and get inspired by the unique world of wild nature and social ideals. Travel through the landscape of Icelandic documentary from June 8 to 21 for free!
Films for the event
Heima (Orig.) / 2007 / Iceland / 97 min
Unannounced open-air concerts in both urban and rural environments – this was how impressionistic Icelandic post-rockers Sigur Rós greeted their homeland (heima) after returning from a world tour. We follow them on this musical road movie around Iceland where the band performs the biggest and smallest shows of their career in their home environment: in deserted fish factories, far-flung community halls, sylvan fields, darkened caves, and even in a cod-liver oil storage tank in the western fjords...
Inni (Orig.) / 2011 / Iceland, United Kingdom / 75 min
INNI is Sigur Rós's second live film following 2007's hugely-celebrated “Heima”. Whereas that film positioned the enigmatic group in the context of their Icelandic homeland, providing geographical, social and historical perspectives on their otherworldly music, with uplifting results, “Inni” focusses purely on the band's performance...
Gnarr (Orig.) / 2010 / Iceland / 90 min
As Iceland faced all-out economic collapse in 2009, popular comedic personality Jón Gnarr conceived the idea of the Best Party. What began as a satirical statement, attempting to parody both left-wing and right-wing parties, took on a life of its own in the Reykjavik mayoral campaign...
Salóme (Orig.) / 2014 / Iceland / 59 min
Art was an important factor of my childhood, where I would spend time watching mama, through the threads. Today I am back in Iceland, watching her again - this time through the camera. We have not lived under the same roof since I was a teenager.
I am 35, without children and a strong desire to make a film about her. Mum is not interested in being filmed.
The film does not only deal with a mother - daughter relationship, but also a filmmaker and a subject with their own will.
Aska (Orig.) / 2012 / Iceland / 95 min
On April 14th 2010 the earth opened up for the second time in less than a month at Eyjafjallajökull in Southern Iceland. The volcanic eruption melted the ice cap, flooded the nearby farms and spewed 70 tons of ash into the stratosphere per second and disrupted air traffic throughout Northern Europe...
House of Hope - Refugee Camp Iceland (Orig.) / 2013 / Iceland / 53 min
A humble hostel outside Reykjavik serves as a temporary home for refugees seeking asylum in Iceland. The inhabitants of Hostel Fit come from several countries, including Afghanistan, Irak, Iran, Russia, Mauritius, Sudan and Algiers. Their lives are marked by an insecure future, poverty and fear of being shipped back to their countries of origin. Icelandic society is seemingly indifferent to the fate of the refugees, who often spend years anxiously waiting for the bureaucracy to handle their requests for asylum.
Amma Lo-fi (Orig.) / 2012 / Iceland / 62 min
At the tender age of 70 she started recording and releasing her own music straight from the living room. Seven years later she had 59 albums to her name with more than 600 songs – an eccentric myriad of catchy compositions mixing in her pets, found toys, kitchen percussion and a Casio keyboard...
æ ofaní æ (Orig.) / 2014 / Iceland / 50 min
Two twins were separated at birth and grew up in Helsinki and Amsterdam without knowing each other, as part of a scientific experiment. The result is incredible: they have both become artists as adults, one is now older than the other - and they have maintained a mysterious telepathic connection...
Björk: Biophilia Live (Orig.) / 2014 / Iceland / 97 min
In 2011, Icelandic artist Björk released her eighth full-length studio album Biophilia, yet the Biophilia project has continued beyond an album into performances, interactive applications, educational programs, and now a concert film...