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FESTIVALS Norway

Haugesund to screen Bravehearts in memory of Utøya massacre

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- Norwegian director Kari Anne Moe’s “historical portrait of a generation” is programmed for the 40th Norwegian International Film Festival in Haugesund

Haugesund to screen Bravehearts in memory of Utøya massacre

On July 21, 2011, Norwegian director Kari Anne Moe (pictured) and her film crew accompanied Johanne Butenschøn Lindheim to the summer camp on the island of Utøya in the Tyrifjorden, Buskerud, organised by the youth division of the Norwegian Labour Party. The following day – July 22 – they picked her up and headed for Central Oslo, where they would meet Sana El Morabit; when they arrived, at 3:25pm, Anders Behring Breivik’s car bomb exploded in the government quarter, leaving eight dead and 209 injured.

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Dressed in a homemade policeman’s uniform and showing false identification, Breivik continued his rampage on Utøya where he opened fire on campers, killing 69 and wounding 110, before he was arrested. At the court case, which started on April 16 in Oslo, he admitted his actions but claimed defense of necessity.

Moe finished her film, Bravehearts, but with a different story – it is still a portrait of four politically involved youngsters, but is now also “a historical portrait of a devoted generation marked for life by July 22” – which will screen at the 40th Norwegian International Film Festival in Haugesund from August 17-23.

“We could not find a better way to commemorate the event than showing this film – not only because it brings us heart-rendingly close to what happened on July 22, 2011, also because it makes us acquainted with the engaged young people we have learned to appreciate in a new way after the terror attacks,” said Festival Director Gunnar Johan Løvvik.

Herself a former youth politician credited with several documentaries, Moe wrote the script for the portraits of Johanne, Sana, Henrik (Wangberg) and Haakon (Veum) - members of different youth parties – preparing for the 2011 election campaign. “They have important stories to tell,” said Moe. The Anita Rehoff Larsen and Tone Grøttjord production for Sant & Usant will be theatrically released in Norway on August 31 by Euforia Film.

The film’s Norwegian title, For the Youth (Til ungdommen), is from Norway’s second national anthem, Norwegian author Nordahl Grieg’s 1936 poem (better known from its first line, Surrounded by Enemies); set to music by Danish composer Otto Mortensen, it was used at many memorial gatherings and services after July 22, 2011.

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