Join CBFF for an evening of Swedish and Sami culture featuring art and artifacts with Sigrid Cottell and her mother, Ana Lindgren-Rubin, who will introduce the film, SAMI BLOOD, and do a Q&A afterward.
They say that one of the prerequisites in immigrating to America and becoming American is that you leave your culture, traditions, and even your language at the door. You fit in. Give up the old and embrace the new, and adapt to and adopt the dominant culture. Well, that's all well and good, but what is lost in the process? What is the damage done to one's individuality, one's heart, one's soul? The theme of leaving behind who one is in order to become who one will be is explored in provocative, sometimes heartbreaking fashion in the intimate and tender Swedish film, Sami Blood, playing next week in Crested Butte Film Festival's Monthly Film Series.
Sami Blood, set in 1930s Sweden, depicts the challenges of the indigenous Sámi people rubbing up against the dominant Swedish culture. Teenage sisters Elle-Marja and Njenna are taken from their reindeer-breeding family and sent to a Sámi-only boarding school where they are subjected to locals’ taunts and the indignities of race-based physical examinations. While the younger Njenna clings to her cultural traditions, Elle-Marja realizes how deeply she is judged as inferior by the majority Swedes. Being bright and curious (and also attracted to handsome Swedish teens) she rejects her Sámi heritage and stakes out a future of her own. The story is told in one large flashback as the elderly Elle-Marja (who even changes her name to the Swedish, Christina) looks back on her life and the weight of her choices.
Director Amanda Kernell, in her feature-film debut, depicts a little-known piece of Swedish history and young actress Lene Cecilia Sparrok heartbreakingly embodies the quiet devastation that fuels Elle-Marja’s steely determination to forge a different path after being confronted with her own otherness. Since its award-winning premiere at the 2016 Venice International Film Festival, Sami Blood has played to acclaim at festivals around the world and is a film that speaks to the immigrant in us all. At next week's screening here in Crested Butte, local Swedish emigres Sigrid Cottrell and her mother, Ana Lindgren-Rubin will speak to these themes, share art and artifacts from the Sámi culture, and will introduce the film and host a Q&A afterward with Michael Brody, co-director of the festival.
Sami Blood plays Monday, April 9th, 7 pm at the Center for the Arts. **In Lapp and Swedish with English subtitles.**
$10 tickets sold at the door, in advance at the Center for the Arts, or online below.