Highlights from the Volvo Scandinavian Film Festival Australia

The Volvo Scandinavian Film Festival, which takes place across Australia, has announced its first line-up of films. The full programme will be announced in June.

Take a look at the first line-up below:


A Conspiracy of Faith

Original title: Flaskepost fra P

Director: Hans Petter Moland

Starring Fares Fares & Nikolaj Lie Kaas

Get ready for the latest instalment of Denmark’s smash-hit Nordic noir series A Conspiracy of Faith. Described by the Los Angeles Times as “the darkest and most gripping screen adaptation of the Jussi Adler-Olsen novels to date”, this is the last of the trilogy which includes predecessors The Keeper of Lost Causes (SCA14) and The Absent One (2015). Directed by Hans Petter Moland, A Conspiracy of Faith delivers another police procedural featuring Department Q, a dead-end division dedicated to long-unsolved cases.

Nordic Film Database link

In the Blood

Original title: I blodet

Director: Rasmus Heisterberg

Shot entirely on location in Copenhagen, In the Blood follows a group of young men through a warm, sunny summer at a defining moment in their lives. Director Rasmus Heisterberg is known for writing the screenplay for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2009) and A Royal Affair (2012), but with In the Blood, he combines hand-held shots and dreamy summer sequences, along with subtle atmospheric music, to give a realistic picture and nostalgic feeling to this charming film. 

Nordic Film Database link

One-Two-Three Go! 

Original title: En-to-tre-nu!

Director: Barbara Topsøe-Rothenborg

Starring Nikolaj Groth & Clara Rosager

A part of the tenth-grade curriculum at Danish high schools, One Two Three Go! is this year’s winner of the Public Prize at the Robert Awards (the Danish Oscars). Much like the noughties’ film A Walk to Remember (2002), One Two Three Go! is about young love put to the test in unimaginable circumstances. Starring Nikolaj Groth (The Absent One, SCA15) and newcomer Clara Rosager, the chemistry between the two actors breathes life into this intimate, coming-of-age story.  

Nordic Film Database link

The Man

Original title: Mesteren

Director: Charlotte Sieling

Starring Jakob Oftebro, Søren Malling

 Director and script writer Charlotte Sieling returns to features after notable success on TV with Scandi series including Emmy-winning Unit One, The Killing, BAFTA-winning Borgen and The Bridge plus U.S. Homeland. In The Man starring Jakob Oftebro (Volvo Scandinavian Film Festival 2016 guest) and Søren Malling, a world-famous artist is suddenly forced to confront his past when the son he never knew, who is a renowned graffiti artist, shows up at his studio.

 Nordic Film Database link


Little Wing

Original title: Tyttö nimeltä Varpu

Director: Selma Vilhunen

Another tender coming-of-age story is Finnish drama Little Wing. Shot in a realist style, the story centres on the resourceful Varpu as she struggles between fitting in with her friends and her family. The feature debut of Selma Vilhunen, an Academy Award-nominated documentary filmmaker, Vilhunen based part of the story on her own longing for a relationship with her father, who passed away from mental illness. Using her documentary finesse, Vilhunen follows her young protagonist closely, creating a delicate character portrait.

Nordic Film Database link

Tom of Finland

Director: Dome Karukoski

Starring Pekka Strang, Jakob Oftebro

Also starring Jakob Oftebro is FIPRESCI Prize winner Tom of Finland, directed by Dome Karukoski (HEART OF A LION, SCA14).  The biographical drama stars Pekka Strang as Touko Laaksonen, better known as Tom of Finland, a Finnish homoerotic artist. The film paints an engaging portrait of a hugely influential figure in gay culture whose work is showcased in prestigious galleries, including MOMA in New York.

Nordic Film Database link



Original title: Hjartasteinn

Director: Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson

Starring Søren Malling, Baldur Einarsson, Blær Hinriksson

The winner of 26 international awards at film festivals since its release last September, HEARTSTONE is an emotionally driven, beautifully crafted film that follows the lives of a group of youths as they explore sexuality and maturity over a summer in a small Icelandic village. Inspired by the director Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson’s own childhood, this intimate drama explores universal struggles within a closed environment.

Nordic Film Database link


The King’s Choice

Original title: Kongens nei

Director: Erik Poppe

Starring Anders Baasmo Christiansen, Jesper Christensen, Tuva Novotny

Norway’s official selection at the 2017 Academy Awards, The King’s Choice, which is based on extraordinary true events. Erik Poppe’s commanding and full-blooded box office hit is set during a pivotal moment in World War II, when an unprepared Norway was invaded by German forces and their monarch presented with a terrible ultimatum.

Nordic Fim Database link

Framing Mom

Original title: Rosemari

Director: Sara Johnsen

Starring Tuva Novotny, Ruby Dagnall

Highly acclaimed Norwegian director, author and screenwriter, Sara Johnsen brings us ROSEMARI. In the middle of her wedding reception, the doubtful bride Unn Tove (Tuva Novotny, known for her roles in the Netflix series Nobel as well as film roles in A WAR, EAT PRAY LOVE, THE KING’S CHOICE) finds a newborn baby girl abandoned in the hotel restroom. Sixteen years later, a young and energetic girl shows up on her doorstep. Together they unravel a story about a young couple’s unrestrained love, an eccentric ex-boxer with a taste for erotica, and a mother covering up her life’s biggest secret.

Nordic Film Database link

Handle with Care

Director: Arild Andresen

Starring Kristoffer Joner

Kristoffer Joner is Kjetil, a recent widower, now left alone to take care of his adopted son, Daniel. Unable to deal with his single parent role, Kjetil decides to bring Daniel back to his birthplace, Colombia, where they search for his biological mother.

Nordic Film Database link


Directed by Benjamin Ree

From child prodigy to chess genius, Magnus is a lively documentary that explores how chess virtuoso Magnus Carlsen, the 26-year-old Norwegian, rose to become the World Chess Champion. In the intriguing documentary, Carlsen appears at Harvard University in 2013 to face off against 10 of the world’s greatest players in simultaneous games — and he does it blindfolded!

Nordic Film Database Link 


NSW          July 11 – August 2 Palace Verona & Palace Norton Street

ACT            July 18 – August 2 Palace Electric

VIC              July 13 –  August 2 Palace Cinema Como, Palace Brighton Bay & Palace Westgarth

WA             July 20 – August 2 Cinema Paradiso

QLD           July 20 – August 6 Palace Barracks & Palace Centro

SA               July 19 – July 30 Palace Nova Eastend

TAS             July 20 – July 26 State Cinema

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.

Comments (1)

  • Hi:
    We are looking for a film on aging — either narrative or documentary for our 7th Annual Legacy Film Festival on Aging, scheduled for September 15-17, 2017.
    Can you help? Can you recommend a film?
    Thank you,
    Sheila Malkind, Executive Director

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