In an awards ceremony to mark the end of the 45th Norwegian Film Festival in Haugesund, Joachim Trier’s latest feature Thelma, which opened the festival on Sunday, was presented with the Norwegian Film Critics Prize.
In the film, Thelma (Eili Harboe) moves away from her religious family in Western Norway to study in Oslo and falls in love with fellow student Anja (Okay Kaya). She begins to notice a connection to the supernatural, which manifests itself in violent attacks, but tries to keep it hidden. Then Anja disappears…
The jury said in its deliberation: “The winner is an original and moving genre film, conscious of its film history roots. As a contribution to the traditions of the genre it springs from, it distinguishes itself with its distinctive Scandinavian motives and symbolism.”
Meanwhile, the International Film Critics Association gave the FIPRESCI Award for Best Nordic Film to Rojda Sekersöz for her debut feature, Beyond Dreams (Dröm vidare), about a group of suburban girlfriends whose friendship and dreams are put to the test when one of them is released from prison.
The jury said: “This is a film that combines the raw energy of its teenage heroines with gripping Scandinavian social realism. This is an engaging and well-made coming-of-age story.”