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Roy Andersson

Roy Andersson – Du Levande aka You, the Living (2007)

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Or, you, the living dead. The motley bunch of sad-looking characters that inhabit this series of vaguely-connected episodes of modern Stockholm life that sit somewhere between Kaurismäki, Buñuel and the Far Side cartoons all look as if they died days ago: their skins are white and drooping and their eyes look dead in their sockets. That’s life, though, Swedish director Roy Andersson seems to be saying in this most maudlin of feature-length comedy sketch shows which recalls the gallows humour of his ‘Songs from the Second Floor’ (2000). Read More »

Roy Andersson – En kärlekshistoria aka A Swedish Love Story (1970)

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Fifteen year-old Pär and fourteen year-old Annika fall in love…

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Summer with Annika: A Swedish Love Story (1970)
Jean A. Gili

Author of very few works – four films in thirty-seven years, including Songs from the Second Floor (2000) and You, the Living (2007) – Roy Andersson made his first film in 1970, a tale of adolescent love set against the backdrop of a cruel tableau of the petite bourgeoisie wedged between conformity and frustration. Rediscovered now, A Swedish Love Story (En Kärlekshistoria) shows the inauguration of a critical gaze that has never deviated from its just distance. Read More »

Roy Andersson – En duva satt på en gren och funderade på tillvaron AKA A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence (2014)

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Synopsis:
Like modern times’ Don Quixote and Sancho Panza, Sam and Jonathan, two travelling salesmen peddling novelty items, take us on a kaleidoscopic wandering through human destinies. A trip that shows us the beauty of single moments, the pettiness of others, the humour and tragedy that is in us, life’s grandeur as well as frailty of humanity. A Pigeon Sat on a Branch Reflecting on Existence was Awarded Golden Lion for Best Film at the 2014 Venice International Film Festival. Read More »

Roy Andersson – Commercials (Various)

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“A selection of Andersson’s droll little capitalist nightmares (‘the best in the world’ according to Ingmar Berman) featuring color-drained people who have ceased to be consumers and become the consumed. Middle-aged newlyweds pound one another’s skulls with appliances; new purchases bring disasters; and an infamous ad for Sweden’s Social Democratic Party rhetorically asks ‘Why Should We Care About One Another’ as nurses offhandedly toss patients around rooms, teachers shake down kids for lunch money, and commuters kick a man while he’s down” (Jason Sanders, Pacific Film Archive). Read More »

Roy Andersson – Någonting har hänt aka Something Happened (1987)

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In Roy Andersson’s film work, the ambition is to come as close to the truth as possible. In some instances this objective has put Andersson in a difficult position with those who commission works from him. One example is the film Something Happened – an information film about AIDS, commissioned by the Swedish National Board of Health and Welfare – on which he began work in 1986. When Andersson in 1987 had three-fourths of the film completed, the Board forced him to stop production. The official explanation was that the film was too dark in its message, and it went unseen by the public for a number of years. Read More »

Roy Andersson – Besöka sin son AKA Visiting One’s Son (1967)

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Mother, father and sister visit the adult son in the family in his small apartment for a dinner. The father gives one critical view after the other about his sons life.

Roy Anderssons school shorts has not got the same aesthetics as his most well-known works; “You, the Living”, “World of Glory” and “Songs from the Second Floor”. But it is easy to compare them to his other early works, such as “A Swedish Love Story” and “Giliap”. This is the first of major three school films Roy Andersson made. All released recently by Scanbox and SFI in a dvd collection containing the best known Andersson shorts. Read More »

Roy Andersson – Giliap (1975)

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Roy Andersson premiered his second feature-length film, “Giliap”, in 1975. The film is a marked departure from “A Swedish Love Story”, and that is no accident. Success brought pressure onto Andersson to make “A Swedish Love Story II”. But he didn’t want to be someone who churned out yet another film in the same spirit, and then one more… So he changed style drastically in “Giliap”. Andersson had great hopes for the film, but it found neither a public nor positive reviews. “Giliap” did, however, win a larger reception abroad, especially in France. Yet despite its meagre successes in Sweden, the film is interesting, not least aesthetically. For here one finds the first seeds of Andersson’s distinctive film style. Read More »