Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Falkenberg Farewell (Farväl Falkenberg)

Several young men, ranging from early twenties to early thirties, spend the summer in their southern Swedish seaside home town of 20,000 people, Falkenberg. They are working through the choice between an uncertain future somewhere else or the certainty of boredom and emptiness if they remain in Falkenberg. We see footage tracking these friends from childhood — apparently some old family "Super 8" footage — through to the present, when a tragedy strikes. As the InsideOut program notes pointed out, there isn't any overt expression of homosexuality, but enough of the characters are somewhat ambiguous in their interactions that the odds are pretty good that at least some of them are queer. The film evocatively builds the town around us, as well as both the joy and the despair these young men feel for their lives there. Definitely not a feel-good "cinematic cotton candy" comedy, but strongly recommended.

Falkenberg Farewell (Farväl Falkenberg), dir. Jesper Ganslandt, Sweden 2006, 88 min. 35mm

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