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Of Horses and Men picks up the Nordic Council Film Prize


- Icelandic writer-director Benedikt Erlingsson's country romance about the human streak in the horse – and that of the horse in the human – is Iceland's first win

Of Horses and Men picks up the Nordic Council Film Prize
Of Horses and Men by Benedikt Erlingsson

Yesterday (29 October), Icelandic writer-director Benedikt Erlingsson and producer Fridrik Thór Fridriksson's Of Horses and Men [+see also:
film review
film focus
interview: Benedikt Erlingsson
festival scope
film profile
received the Nordic Council Film Prize 2014 at a ceremony in Stockholm City Hall, during the Nordic Council's autumn session.

(The article continues below - Commercial information)

It is the first time that Iceland has collected the €47,000 award, which has gone to Denmark five times, Sweden four and Finland once. Last year, it was won by Danish director Thomas Vinterberg's Oscar- and Golden Globe-nominated The Hunt [+see also:
film review
film focus
interview: Thomas Vinterberg
interview: Thomas Vinterberg
film profile

“A strikingly original film with its roots in the laconic humour of the Icelandic saga tradition, Of Horses and Men deals with the strong bonds connecting humankind and nature,” said the Danish producer of The HuntSisse Graum Jørgensen. At the heart of the film’s interconnected tales are mankind’s eternal attempts to control nature and its pathetic failure to do so, often with disastrous consequences. 

“The director demonstrates a profound understanding of the primal side of both horses and humans. Using the animal’s point of view to depict tragicomic human behaviour endows the film with a distinctive lyricism as well as a darkly comic tone. He combines powerful visuals, editing and music in a way that makes Of Horses and Men itself stand out as a force of nature.” 

Starring Ingvar E Sigurdsson, the Hrossabrestur production is described as “a country romance about the human streak in the horse, and that of the horse in the human; love and death become intertwined with enormous consequences; the fortunes of people in the countryside as seen through the eyes of horses”. Having toured around 72 international film festivals, Of Horses and Men was also awarded six Eddas, Iceland's national film prize.

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