Home Celebrity “In the film, God is both a presence and an absence”

“In the film, God is both a presence and an absence”

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The loneliness, the cold, the XIXe century, faith. Four themes for a work of austere elegance: “Godland” (the country of God), the third film by Hlynur Palmason, is the story of a young Danish priest sent at the end of the 19e century on an Icelandic island to evangelize the population there – and take pictures. Little by little, while this priest develops his collodion plates, his mission changes. The colonization of the place is difficult, the obvious carnal temptation, the absence of God, everything is mixed, in a landscape of wind, sea, savagery.

This plunge into an icy world is fascinating for its visual beauty, its meditative rhythm and the mastery of the staging. Hlynur Palmason, born in 1984 in Hornafjordur, a small town in the south of Iceland, studied at the National Film School of Denmark before directing two feature films, “Winter Brothers” (2017) and “Un jour si blanc (2019), who have in common a taste for cold landscapes, neat style, and the quest for souls.

With “Godland”, he tackles an unexpected spiritual heritage: that of Carl Theodor Dreyer, a meticulous filmmaker of disenchantment. The human charge of “Godland” is palpable: Palmason, visibly, is the filmmaker of the torments of the spirit, and, like the song of the cathedrals, his work is a search for an interior light. Interview.

One of the aspects of your film is the political dimension, which is unknown to us. Yet it is present, is it not?

This is the situation

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