På Nordisk film- og tv-fonds nettside har Steve Gravestock, som er ansvarlig for den nordiske filmregionen under Toronto film festival, begrunnet sine valg av filmer til årets festival. Det er hele 12 nordiske filmer som er tatt ut i år, deriblant åtte premierefilmer. De norske kandidatene er som kjent Liv Ullmanns Frøken Julie, Bent Hamers 1001 Gram og Ole Giævers Mot naturen (du kan lese intervju med dem alle i nyeste utgaven av Rushprint). Gravestock beskriver den nordiske representasjonen som sterk, og har formulert sine tanker om tendenser han ser i hver enkelt film.
”A number of films were linked by a sense of history as an unbearable burden. This was especially evident in Swedish master Roy Andersson’s A PIGEON SAT ON A BRANCH REFLECTING ON EXISTENCE which recoils in horror at Europe and North America’s colonial past and our appalling lack of empathy towards other living beings. (The imagery in these passages is really, really shocking.) It certainly says something that the ostensible heroes of the film are two aging, possible senile novelty salesmen who experience history as a nightmare.
In FORCE MAJEURE, Ruben Östlund’s Cannes hit, the couple is literally on the run (at least the husband is) from the weight of old roles, old assumptions about men and women, and their own complete inability to measure up to those roles. It’s driven by a sense of societal collapse, much like Ole Giæver’s hilarious and sometimes troubling OUT OF NATURE, where a middle class salary man decides to go for a run/hike in the mountains near his home and begins to tear apart his life and everyone else’s. It’s like Dostoevsky’s Underground man out for a jog – he can’t escape his own relentless compulsion to judge and question everyone. No one, even himself, measures up. A sense of imminent collapse (at least in terms of class and responsibility) is of course the subject of Liv Ullmann’s adaptation of August Strindberg’s fin de siècle drama MISS JULIE which stars Jessica Chastain, Colin Farrell and Samantha Morton.
Something similar occurs, in a much more upbeat light hearted way, in Bent Hamer’s luminous romance, 1001 GRAMS, about a hyper ordered woman (Ane Dahl Torp) whose life is disrupted by family tragedies, and finds herself forced to travel to Paris several times in the span of a month, where a whole new world is revealed to her. It’s possibly Hamer’s most charming piece and boasts that absurd, slyly uncomfortable sense of humour people loved in earlier films like KITCHEN STORIES.»