Berlinale opened: Jørgen + Anne = sant

Posted by on Feb 12, 2011 in Berlinale, Cinema | No Comments

“Hi, my name is Ane. I’m 9½ years old, 145 centimeters tall, and I weigh 32 kilos. I love fish fingers and climbing trees. I basically like a lot of things. It’s pretty easy to be me!”

Yesterday, the 34th Generation (children’s section) of the 61st Berlinale (the annual Berlin International Film Festival)  was opened with the brand-new Norwegian film “Jørgen + anne = sant”. I love this festival and attend as many film premieres as possible every year—where and when else do you get the chance to witness the premiere of a movie, usually with director and actors present for questions and applause, for just 2€ a ticket? The “big festival”—the Competition you mostly hear about in the press—is quite hard to get in: you need to queue for tickets (which are more expensive), can only by 2 max at a time… And there’s all this “star” and “fan” business with celebrities I’m not exactly excited about. But to applause two ~10 year old Norwegian kids, who stand before an excited audience of a thousand kids who’ve just seen a romatic movie… That’s more to my liking.

So we saw this lovely girl:

The official movie poster, available on Facebook © ?

and learned about her struggles with first love. (The English title of the film is Totally True Love, which imo totally removes the magic and mystery… The German title in the Berlinale program at least keeps the style: “Jørgen + Anne = für immer” (for ever).  The Norwegian really translates to “Jørgen + Anne = True”.

To raise your interest, watch this YouTube trailer:

And there are nice pictures on the Facebook page (no need to log in to see them). I always ask myself: how do they find these amazing kids in Scandinavian movies?

Beate, Anne's best friend (and her love Einar in the background) © ?

The film is amazing. I’ve seen a lot of children’s movies, especially Scandinavian ones. Quite a lot of them are very good, but some are special… Don’t want to give away too much of the plot, which in a summarized version wouldn’t sound very interesting anyway, but:

  • The actors, especially the children, are exceptional. They have to transport some quite intense emotions to the audience, which each and every of the children did exceptionally well. Plus, they play well together as a cast.
  • The editing and sound is exceptionally modern and well-paced… More in the style of a nail-biting thriller (at times) than like a romantic or children film usually is.
  • The combination of close-ups (there are a lot of them, and some are quite close) with the intensity of the children’s play… Don’t know a word for that.

To put it into one sentence: if you had asked me if a schoolyard love story between 10-year-olds could capture my full attention for 90 minutes, I would probably have said no. This film did. I will watch it again, and not only because my daughter makes me to!

If you want to watch the movie, which I would recommend you to do, there’s one more chance here in Berlin: tomorrow morning at 10am. If you live in Norway, you are lucky—the release date is only two weeks away: February 25th. I hope the film will come to German theatres, too—some do, some don’t, for whatever reasons. Cinema for children is obviously valued higher in Norway (and Scandinavia) than in other parts of the world, which is why they make the best children’s films.

Watch it and enjoy it!.

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