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The Nordic films screening at the Palm Springs International Film Festival

Palm Springs International Film Festival

The Palm Springs International Film Festivals runs from the 2nd until the 15th of January in Palm Springs, USA. The festival is known for supporting American indepedent cinema as well as world cinema.

Denmark

You Disappear

Directed by Peter Schønau Fog

Starring Trine Dyrholm, Nikolaj Lie Kaas, Michael Nyqvist, Mikkel Boe Følsgaard

In this psychological drama, Mia is married to a successful headmaster, who is caught embezzling from his own school. Did he do this of his own free will? Or was his personality—and their life together—altered by a brain tumor?

Festival Link

The Charmer

Directed by Milad Alami

Starring Ardalan Esmaili, Soho Rezanejad, Lars Brygmann, Susan Taslimi

A searing and topical exploration of the immigrant experience shot through with elements of psychological thriller and erotic drama, Milad Alami’s striking feature debut follows an Iranian man’s increasingly desperate attempts to secure citizenship by seducing a string of Danish women.

Festival Link

Review

Finland

Tom of Finland

Directed by Dome Karukoski

Starring Pekka Strang, Lauri Tilkanen, Jessica Grabowsky, Werner Daehn

This rousing biopic traces the transformation of shy Helsinki ad-man Touko Laaksonen into an international gay celebrity, whose proudly homoerotic drawings shaped the fantasies of a generation of gay men.

Festival Link

Review

Iceland

Under the Tree

Directed by Hafsteinn Gunnar Sigurðsson

Starring Steinþór Hróar Steinþórsson, Edda Björgvinsdóttir, Sigurður Sigurjónsson

This darkly comic drama follows two neighboring families involved in a bitter dispute over a tree. As the dispute escalates, property is damaged, pets mysteriously disappear, security cameras are installed and the complaining neighbor acquires a chainsaw.

Festival Link

Review

Norway

Thelma

Directed by Joachim Trier

Starring Eili Harboe, Kaya Wilkins, Ellen Dorrit Petersen, Henrik Rafaelsen

Shy Thelma leaves her religious family in a small town on the west coast of Norway to attend university in Oslo. Thelma’s attraction to an alluring female student develops simultaneously with mysterious seizures—symptoms of an inexplicable, often dangerous, supernatural ability.

Joachim Trier will be attending the festival.

Festival Link

Interview with Joachim Trier

Sweden

The Square

Directed by Ruben Östlund

Starring Elisabeth Moss, Claes Bang, Dominic West, Terry Notary, Christopher Læssø

Following his masterpiece Force Majeure (PSIFF 2015), which skewered the social dynamics of family behavior, Ruben Östlund returns with this hilarious and provocative story of a respected museum curator who finds it difficult to live up to his own purported ideals. Winner of the 2017 Palme d’Or.

Ruben Östlund will be attending the festival.

Festival Link

Review

Interview with Ruben Östlund

Borg/McEnroe

Directed by Janus Metz

Starring  Shia LaBeouf, Sverrir Gudnason, Stellan Skarsgård

Authoritatively claiming a place in the sports film canon, Borg vs. McEnroe grippingly explores the characters of the two legendary athletes on opposite sides of the net—and the personality spectrum—for one of the greatest tennis matches of all time.

Festival Link

Interview with Ronnie Sandahl

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.