Denmark’s most common names explored in documentary


Us international audiences might occasionally become confused by the repetitive names that we hear in Denmark. It seems that the Danes themselves have picked up on this, and now two new documentaries about the matter are about to have their TV premiere.

We are Jens Jensen and We are Kirsten Jensen are the titles of the two documentaries that depict life from birth to death of fourteen people with Denmark’s most common names.

There are 3600 people in Denmark who are named Jens Jensen, and the first documentary follows seven of them, from baby Jens to nineteen year old student Jens who is struggling to pick a career and also sixty-five year old Jens, who has always prioritised work. In We are Kirsten Jensen, we follow a similar premise but with Kirsten Jensen’s. We meet the teenager who is wondering what her classmates think about her, and we also meet the sixty-nine year old Kirsten who is loving life.


The goal of the series is to draw a general image of Danish life, and how even though we are also similar we live very diverse life. The documentaries were made by Anders Birch and Jacob Volvers, and are produced for TV2 Denmark with support from the Danish Film Institute.

You can watch a teaser below and be sure to let us know what you think!


Emma Vestrheim

Emma Vestrheim is the editor-in-chief of Cinema Scandinavia. Originally from Australia, she is now based in Bergen, Norway, and attends major Nordic film festivals to conduct interviews and review new films.