Thursday March 14, at 7 PM, Norwegian director Bent Hamer will meet the Festival audience at BFM Bookshop in Piazza della Libertà.
Director, screenwriter, producer and founder of the production company BulBul Film, Bent Hamer is a full fledged representative of the “new wave” of Norwegian filmmakers. He was born in Sandefjord (1956) and later moved to Stockholm to study Literature and Film Theory at the local University and Film School; educated and attentive to social issues, Bent Hamer is an ever-evolving artist who has been able to reveal a little-known face of Norway. Acclaimed and celebrated in the Scandinavian film scene, he is an author who focuses a lot on his characters, showing a preference for misfits, outcasts and loners. His delicate touch, a clever and surreal humour, his non-trivial lightness infuse Bentamer’s cinema with a “humanistic” attitude.
His first feature film Eggs (1995), selected at the Quinzaine des réalisateurs in Cannes and at the Toronto and Moscow Film Festivals, has won numerous awards and is a delicate portrait of the daily routine of two seventy-year-old retirees, soon interrupted by the arrival of the illegitimate child of one of them. En dag til i solen (Water Easy Reach, 1998), a ghastly comedy that combines burlesque with magical realism, earned him the Amanda award – the most important Norwegian film award – for Best Screenplay. 2003 is the year of Salmer fra kjøkkenet (Kitchen Stories), a bizarre tale of friendship between a scientific observer and one of the test subjects of an absurd research carried out in the ’50s by the Swedish Institute for Home Research, to optimize the economy of housewives’ movements. Presented at the Cannes, Toronto, Copenhagen and Valladolid film festivals, to name but a few, the feature won several awards. In April 2004 Hamer began shooting Factotum, a film based on the homonymous story by North American poet and writer Charles Bukowski, starring Matt Dillon, for which he also co-wrote the screenplay together with Jim Stark. Just like Factotum, O’Horten (2008), a twilight and metaphorical film infused with melancholy irony and starring a retired train driver, was selected by the Cannes Film Festival. With Hjem til jul (Home for Christmas, 2010), a bittersweet transposition of Only Soft Present under the Tree, (a collection of short stories by Norwegian author Levi Henriksen) he won the award for Best Screenplay in San Sebastián; the film was also presented in Toronto. In 2014 he directed 1001 Gram (1001 grams), an intimate film dealing the existential crisis of 35-year-old Marie, a Scandinavian scientist who studies units of measurement together with her father.