The 29th edition of the Tokyo International Film Festival has started, and one film will be promoting the Nordics as part of the Tokyo Grand Prix: Sami Blood.
Sami Blood is a Danish/Norwegian/Swedish film by Amanda Kernell that explores the Scandinavian variant of a shameful practice employed by certain nations around the world in the 19th and 20th centuries: the systematic removal of Indigenous children from their parents, homes and traditional lifestyles and forced to integrate into an educational system that taught them that their customs were unimportant. We follow Elle Marja, a teenage Sami girl in the 1930’s who’s sent to a boarding school intended to raise Indigenous children until they are acceptable to the rest of Swedish society. At first excited, Elle Marja excels in her new surroundings while her younger sister struggles. But soon this success drives a wedge between her and her fellow students.
Sami Blood will be competing among fellow European films 7 Minutes (Italy/Switzerland/France), Paris Prestige (France), Quit Staring at My Plate (Croatia/Denmark), The Fixer (Romania/France), and The Bloom of Yesterday (Germany).