The Norwegian Oscar Committee has announced a shortlist of three films to be considered for Best International Feature Film at the 93rd Academy Awards: Disco by Jorunn Myklebust Syversen, Hope by Maria Sødahl and The Self Portrait by Margreth Olin, Katja Høgset and Espen Wallin. The final submission will be announced next week.
The 93rd Academy Awards will be presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences during a gala ceremony at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles on Sunday 25th April 2021. A shortlist of ten films will be announced by the Academy on 9th February and the final five nominees will be revealed on 15th March 2021.
On the surface, everything seems perfect for 19 year old Mirjam (Josefine Frida Pettersen), the stepdaughter of a charismatic pastor of an evangelical movement called The Freedom. As a world champion in disco freestyle dancing and leader of the youth group in the congregation, she is the pride of the church.
However, whilst defending her title, Mirjam collapses on stage and she starts to question her faith. Her family think that she should be a better believer, but Mirjam’s body continues to fail her. Frustrated and in search of answers, she is drawn to a a stricter, more conservative congregation and secretly leaves for their summer camp.
Hope explores what happens when someone is given three months to live. Anja (Andrea Bræin Hovig) and Tomas (Stellan Skarsgård) share a home with each other and their children, but over the years they have grown apart. So when Anja is diagnosed with terminal brain cancer the day before Christmas, their neglected love is exposed as their lives break down.
The Self Portrait (Selvportrett)
Directed by Margreth Olin, Katja Høgset and Espen Wallin
This documentary follows 32 year old Lene Marie Fossen, a unique photographer with an outstanding talent. But she also suffers from severe anorexia and has done so since she was ten years old, hiding from a healthcare system that wants to make her eat. She didn’t want to grow up and was scared of life.
But then Lene Marie learns to take photographs and immerses herself in a world of images. The desire to create gives her the will to live and come out into the world and meet people. Her biggest dream is to have a solo exhibition where, through her pictures, she can show the pain that she carries within.