Archive for December 27th, 2009

by Allan Fish

(Norway 1926 105m) DVD2 (Norway only)

Aka. Brudeferden I Hardanger; The Bridal Party at Hardanger

Pining for the fjords

p  Rasmus Breistein  d/w  Rasmus Breistein  novel  “Marit Skjolte” by Kristofer Janson  ph  Gunnar Nilsen-Vig   m  Halldor Krogh

Aase Bye (Marit Skjolte), Henry Gleditsch (Anders Bjaland), Gunhild Schytte-Jacobsen (older Marit Skjolte), Alfred Maurstad (Vigleik Skjolte), Annik Saxegaard (Eli Skjolte), Vilhelm Lund (Tore Skjolte), Oscar Larsen (older Anders Bjaland), Martin Fiksen (Bard), Dagmar Myhrvold (Kari Bjorve), Henny Skjönberg (Tore’s mother), Gustav Berg-Jaeger (Presten),

When one thinks of Scandinavian cinema in the silent era, Norway isn’t the first country to come to mind.  Indeed, of the four principal Scandinavian national cinemas, there’s a case for saying that the Norwegian has been the least prestigious.  Sweden may dominate and need no introduction, while Denmark had Dreyer and Christensen and others would follow.  Finland, though generally lagging behind, still gave us Tulio, Donner and more recently Kaurismaki.  What has Norway given us?  Only one other film in this list – Per Blom’s The Ice Palace, hardly itself a recognised film – and only a few others worthy of mention.  Here, however, we have the great exception to the rule, Rasmus Breistein’s The Wedding at Hardanger, and yet who has heard of it outside the most specialist and eclectic silent cinema enthusiasts?  It was released on DVD in 2008 after a painstaking restoration which not only restored the quality of the footage but the length, and from the carcass of the 75 minute version that had previously been the only extant copy, arose the greatest film of not only Norwegian silent cinema but arguably their cinema full stop.  (more…)

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