Although sick, Icelandic Rams are heading for the Croisette
by Jorn Rossing Jensen
- Grímur Hákonarson’s second feature has been selected for Un Certain Regard at the Cannes International Film Festival, unspooling between 13 and 24 May
Two brothers in their sixties, who haven’t talked to each other in 40 years, and their dearest belongings – their sheep – play the leads in Grímur Hákonarson’s second feature, Rams [+see also:
interview: Grimur Hakonarson
film profile], which has been selected for the Un Certain Regard sidebar at the Cannes International Film Festival, which runs from 13-24 May.
One of the 19 entries in the competition, Rams was also scripted by Hákonarson and shot in the remote valley of Bárdardalur in northern Iceland, where brothers Kiddi and Gummi live side by side; their ancestral sheep stock is considered one of the country’s best, and they are repeatedly awarded for their rams, which carry an ancient lineage.
When the authorities decide to cull all the animals in the region to contain the outbreak of a lethal disease, many farmers lose their main source of income and abandon their land. But the brothers don’t give up so easily – they try to stave off the disaster, Kiddi by using his rifle and Gummi his wits.
Sigurður Sigurjónsson and Theodór Júlíusson star in the Icelandic-Danish co-production, which was staged by Grímar Jónsson for Iceland’s Netop Films, and co-produced by Ditte Milsted and Jacob Jarek for Denmark’s Profile Pictures. Warsaw’s New Europe Film Sales is handling international distribution.
Besides his feature debut, Summerland (2010), Hákonarson has directed several award-winning shorts and documentaries.
Previous Icelandic selections for Un Certain Regard include Óskar Jónasson’s Remote Control (1993), Sólveig Anspach’s French-Icelandic Stormy Weather [+see also:
film profile] (2003) and Dagur Kári’s Danish-Icelandic Dark Horse [+see also:
film profile] (2005).