Göteborg Film Festival
Göteborg Film Festival 2023, according to me, Martin.

IMDb list of my viewed films: http://www.imdb.com/list/ls562820400/

Les passagers de la nuit

Radiodrama by Mikhaël Hers

111 min, FRA 2022 - Fiction, online
It is election night in France in 1981 and the winds of change are blowing. Even for Elisabeth (Gainsbourg), a recent divorcée who must find a new way to support her two teenage kids.
The acting is great, but the telling of the story is swaying, often failing to grip interest.


3 pools of 6



Roadrunmovie by Abbe Hassan

100 min, SWE 2023 - Fiction, online
In a Turkish harbour, a stream of people comes out of a pale yellow container. The year is 2015 and millions of migrants are trying to get into a closed Europe. 
Sympathetic and believable characters in a, considering the subject, too non-engaging story that gains a point by the extraordinary acting performance by young Jwan Alqatami

4 phones of 6


The Eternal Daughter

Shiningdrama by Joanna Hogg

96 min, UK/USA 2022 - Fiction
The hotel vibrates with The Shining-like vibes as Tilda Swinton plays both mother and daughter in Joanna Hogg’s stylistically sure deep-dive into motherhood and family memories.
Hogg sets an eerie mood, and Tilda Swinton is an international treasure but even she can't fully breathe life into a film that can't really decide whether to be a ghost story, a dark comedy or a tearjerker.

3 runaway dogs of 6


Marerittet (Nightmare)

Pregnancy scare by Kjersti Helen Rasmussen

100 min, NOR 2022 - Fiction
Shortly after Mona and Robby move into their new turn-of-the-century apartment in central Oslo, Mona begins to have increasingly horrible nightmares.
Neither unique nor consistent , but reasonably suspenseful, with excellent and creepy sound design


4 demon babies of 6

Les Cinq Diables (The Five Devils)

Olfactorydrorror by Léa Mysius

96 min, FRA 2022 - Fiction
A sparkling, fantasy-colored drama about aromatic mysteries, fire, and love that crosses boundaries.
A well-structured take on the grandfather paradox with clever buildup and fine acting, mostly.

5 jars of 6

Aurora’s Sunrise

Drama documentary by Inna Sahakyan

97 min, ARM/LIT/GER 2022 - Animated
Armenia’s Aurora Mardiganian, is honoured posthumously in powerful animation about teenage girl who escaped genocide and became famous in Hollywood.
Strong, gripping, beautifully animated with a protagonist who tells her story without cheap exaggerated pathos.

5 coloured silk cocoons of 6


Horticuluredytopia by Bruno Samper, Kristina Buožyte

114 min, LIT/FRA/BEL 2022 - Fiction
Dark sci-fi saga introduces ecological disaster where toxic viruses have left few of the common citizens alive, while the upper class rules the wealthy Citadel.
Evocative set design and high concepts in captivating, though predictable, dystopia in a future Lithuania where English apparently is lingua franca. Eddie Marsan shines, as per usual.

4 cordyceps of 6

Fumer fait tousser (Smoking Causes Coughing)

Splatterheroantjology by Quentin Dupieux

80 min, FRA 2022 - Fiction
Superheroes from the Tobacco Forces head off on a retreat in madly creative Quentin Dupieux’s totally twisted, blood-splattered, star-packed splatter cavalcade.
Weird but fun. Also slightly weird. And fun.

4 freshwater barracudas of 6

La vaca que cantó una canción hacia el futuro (The Cow Who Sang a Song Into the Future)

Bovinity by Francisca Alegria

98 min, CHI/FRA/USA/GER 2022 - Fiction
A dead woman comes back to life in a poisoned river, and fish and cows sing, in a seminal Chilean, magical-realism debut about environmental tragedy and family secrets.
Beautifully cinematography in an otherwise incoherent pretentious mess

2 mixed metaphors of 6

How to Blow Up a Pipeline

Reverse heistmovie by Daniel Goldhaber

99 min, USA 2022 - Fiction
In Texas, young environmentalists plan to sabotage an oil pipeline in this explosive thriller based on Andreas Malm's book.
Suspenseful and with enough backstory to provide motivation for the characters' action, but never preachy.

5 candles of 6


Weedairyactioncomedy by Damian Marcano

105 min T&T/USA 2022 - Fiction
Skimma longs to see the world but the unexpected prospect of fatherhood, after a clumsy and confused one-night stand, precipitates his need for quick money to escape the island. An inspired idea sees him harvest marijuana from the fields of a tai-chi loving Rastafarian and mix it with the locally-made ricotta cheese, to create a delicious high.
Fun, witty, innovative and with the best subtitles since the cushions rant on Coupling. Breaking Bad meets Bob Marley.

5 bagas of 6


Assaultcopingdrama by Del Kathryn Barton

101 min AUS 2022 - Fiction
The coming-of-age genre gets a revitalizing vitamin-kick in this daring Australian drama about twelve-year-old Blaze who witnesses a terrible crime, and the shock turns her world upside down with waves of anger, grief, and depressions that she can only channel into her own fantasy world.
Strong, grim, visually innovative and traumatic by proxy.

5 dragons of 6

The Almond & The Seahorse

Amnesiadramedy by Celyn Jones, Tom Stern

96 min, UK 2022 - Fiction
After having had a brain tumor removed, nothing seems to stick to Joe anymore while his old memories are increasingly fading away. Gwen has become stuck in 1999, recognizing neither her partner nor her own mirror image.
Heavy topic presented unevenly in sometimes gutpunching scenes, with wasted potential, some great acting, and a pacing problem.

3 cigarettes of 6


Alternawardramedy by  Andrew Legge

79 min, IRE/UK 2022 - Fiction
Two sisters’ technological brilliance changes the course of World War II and lets them try their hand at punk in the 1940s, in playful and stylish vintage sci-fi.
Clever and innovative, with much less shenenigans than expected, for worse, but mostly for better.

5 starmen of 6

Women Talking

Culttheatre by Sarah Polley

104 min, USA 2022 - Fiction
Word of God and patriarchal violence dominate the faraway colony where modern society has yet to reach. Now the women have had enough and go for the first time to vote in order to take command over their collective fate.
Brilliant acting, balanced pacing and strong characters in an array of well-crafted monologues, that builds to a horrifying story that could well be told from a theatre stage.

5 braids of 6

Unicorn Wars

Cuddlemetaphor by Alberto Vázquez

93 min, ESP/FRA 2022 Animated
Ultrareligious warmongering teddy bears are at bloody war with the unicorns in pastel splatter war film.
High hopes that weren't met, as I had expected cruel comedy, but got slightly on-the-nose drama instead. Can't complain about the concept or the animation, though, and some heartstrings were definitely tugged.

4 blueberries of 6

The Whale

Darren Aronofsky

117 min, USA 2022 - Fiction
Charlie lives an isolated life and does his teaching work online. He weighs nearly three hundred kilos and does not leave home.
Stageplayvibes galore gives all the actors opportunity to shine, and they take it. Especially Chau and Fraser give touching and honest performances. Great pacing, weird aspect ratio and brilliantly scripted.

5 pamphlets of 6

The Ordinaries

Metametaphor by Sophie Linnenbaum

120 min, GER 2022 - Fiction
Paula lives in a cinematic reality with great class differences. Just like her late father, she wants to be famous and a recognized main character.
Great concept, mostly executed with a fine balance between concept and nose-writing. Cliché, of course, but it has every right to be.

4 Pleasantvilles of 6

Brujería (Sorcery)

Revengecursery by Christopher Murray

100 min, CHI/MEX/GER 2023 - Fiction
A dark and enigmatic fantasy-tinged revenge drama based on real events, about colonialism and witchcraft on the Chilean island of Chiloé in 1880.
Almost excruciatingly slow pacing.... No, scratch the almost. And the messages are very on the nose: racism - bad, witch-hunting - bad. It's slow, boring and incoherent. Nice cinematography, though.

2 hides of 6


Booty-camp by David Wagner

87 min, AUT 2022 - Fiction
Rock-hard (tee-hee) commander comes out of the uniform closet in stringent but surprising genre-challenging boot-camp drama based on real events.
In a surprising turn of events, this film is not even remotely surprising. It's so predictable that it almost gets surprising again. By-the-numbers coming-out-story that feels like its 30 years late to the game.

2 berets of 6

Sharp Stick

Sexskeetch by Lena Dunham

86 min, USA 2022 - Fiction
After a traumatic hysterectomy in her teens, Sara Jo (Kristine Froseth) is now an inhibited and very naive 26-year-old virgin. She lives with her mother (Jennifer Jason Leigh) and her far more outgoing influencer sister (Taylor Paige) in the outskirts of Hollywood.
Rather bland and pointless. The second half, with the main characters strife to connect to her favourite adult star is more engaging than the first.

3 bows of 6

Il Pataffio

Medievire by Fancesco Lagi

117 min, ITA/BEL 2022 - Fiction
Pythonesque medieval tale of freedom, hunger, sex, and power, where an unlikely retinue of incompetent knights must take possession of their new castle.
Just because it features jokes and knights doesn't make it Pythonesque, although one can't help comparing it to the undisputed GOAT of all medieval comedies. But even without that impossible bar, Il Pataffio falls short. How much? A lot. Funny language, though, and kudos to the author of the English subtitles, nicely capturing the witty, olde-tymey pseudo italian-latin spoken.

3 actual horses of 6

In the Court of the Crimson King

Rockumentary by Toby Amies

86 min, UK/ITA 2022 - Documentary
Pursuit of musical perfection turns into entertaining display of group dynamics – tag along on tour as King Crimson celebrates fifty years.
Pretty standard portrayal of a pretty non-standard band. Founder and constant member Robert Fripp is presented as quite unsympathetic, and I'm not convinced he has the musical genius to back that up.When Amies focuses on the much more relatable Bill Rieflin the film gets better.

3 drummers of 6


Costumedrama by Marie Kreutzer

113 min, AUT/FRA/GER/LUX 2022 - Fiction
Empress Elisabeth is widely known for her beauty and extravagance, but once she turns forty in 1877, she is expected to accept a more withdrawn role. But “Sisi” is set on maintaining her image and pulls her corset tighter and tighter.
Uneven and uneventful, considering what could be done with the setting. Krieps shines, though, with an interesting and multifaceted character to work with.

3 stable-boys of 6

Á Ferđ međ Mömmu (Driving Mum)

Roadurfilmur by Hilmar Oddsson

113 min, ICE/EST 2022 - Fiction
A drive through a barren and often fog-shrouded landscape in an award-winning and visionary drama that, with quirky humor, tells the story of a middle-aged man's coming to terms with his life.
Stunning landscapes, often slow, sometimes reasonably fun, but mostly forgettable.

3 meetings of 6

Saules aveugles, femme endormie (Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman)

Artimation by Pierre Földes

112 min, FRA/LUX/CAN/NED 2022 - Animated
Murakami short stories intertwine in charming animation about a runaway cat, giant talking frog, and three lost souls in earthquake-stricken Tokyo.
The art style is jarring, ugly even, which wouldn't be much of a problem had the story been more engaging. It is more of a loose collection of stories, some better than others. None too bad, but none captivating enough to lift the total up from meh.

3 frogs of 6


Artreflection by Mary Harron

104 min, UK/USA 2022 - Fiction
Gallery errand boy James (Christopher Briney) catches the attention of Surrealist giant and eccentric Salvador Dalí and his wife and lifelong companion Gala, and soon has a new job as the couple’s assistant. He is starstruck and naďve, but from his new perspective from the inside.
Dalí is one of my favourite painters, and Sukowa is one of my favourite actors. That obviously colours my experience of the film, but tainting or enhancing is hard to tell. It's never boring, but it doesn't really grip, either. Good fun, though.

4 cheeses of 6

Regra 34 (Rule 34)

Feelflick by Julia Murat

100 min, BRA/FRA 2022 - Fiction
Young black law student works part-time on a porn site and experiments with BDSMCaptivating, well acted and finely paced.
It makes you feel with the protagonist; joy when she's happy, ennui when she's sad, uncomfortable when she's in pain. A fine finish on a film festival that otherwise unfortunately declined towards the end.

5 chats of 6


Celluloidrelay by numerous, SWE 2022-2023

Galatea 3/6

Svanmön 3/6

Surprise 4/6

Madden 4/6

I Think of Silences When I Think of You 5/6

Jörgen Hyltes svĺger 4/6

Vernissage 3/6

Twerka för Jemen 1/6

3.4 mixed media of 6


(winners presented way further down):

Best supporting actor:

Simon Baker, Blaze
Celyn Jones, The Almond and the Seahorse
Carly-Sophia Davies, The Eternal Daughter
Liv McNeil, Women Talking
Hong Chau, The Whale

Best leading actor:

Sol Miranda, Regra 34
Rooney Mara, Women Talking
Fine Sendel, The Ordinaries
Julia Savage, Blaze
Akil Williams, Chee$e

Best ensemble: 

How to Blow Up a Pipeline
Fumer fait tousser
Women Talking
The Whale

Best director:

Joanna Hogg, The Eternal Daughter
Inna Sahakyan, Aurora's Sunrise
Del Kathryn Barton, Blaze
Andrew Legge, LOLA
Léa Mysius, Les cinq diables

Best film:

Regra 34
Women Talking
And as per usual (it's a tradition, or an old charter, or something....), it seems proper to announce

This year's.....

….cinema: Draken

….low-point: Twerka för Jemen

….shortage: Animation

….best seat: Middle of VIP row at Biopalatset

….cinematography: Óttar Guđnason, Á Ferđ međ Mömmu

….reading: The House in the Cerulean Sea by TJ Klune

….most uneven: Corsage

….set/production design: The Ordinaries

….theme: Experiencing things that aren't really as they seem (marked with a Ghost)

….vignette film: Culture ladies

….weather: Mostly fine

….screenplay: Andrew Legge and Angeli Macfarlane for LOLA

….should be caught at the cinema: Aftersun

….Bechdel spread: 50%

….transport: Trams, E-bike, feet

….Lost item: None

….Skarsgĺrd: None, that I could see

….documentary: Aurora's Sunrise

....rising star: Julia Savage, Blaze

....most GFF 1992-2004: The Almond and the Seahorse

....music: LOLA

....most frequent actor: Charlotte Gainsbourg and Kristine Froseth both appear in two films. So do Noée Abita and Adčle Exarchopoulos, but in smaller parts

....villain: Eddie Marsan, Vesper (portrayal), Azulín, Unicorn Wars (character)
And, who won? Well:

Best supporting actor:

Hong Chau, The Whale

Best leading actor:

Sol Miranda, Regra 34

Best ensemble:

Women Talking

Best director:

Del Kathryn Barton, Blaze

Best film:


Film. Filmfilmfilm.

(c) Martin Smedendahl 2023