15 Danish films to IDFA

IDFA 2014. Zimbabwe moving toward a new constitution, everyday life in Europe's largest garbage dump, an illegal arms drop over India, young Danish-Somali men engaged in holy war – these real-life stories are part of the Danish line-up at IDFA.

No less than 15 Danish titles will be heading for Amsterdam in November as the world's most prominent showcase for documentary films, IDFA, opens its doors on 19 November for twelve days of film screenings, workshops and industry meetings.

Selected for IDFA's Feature-length Competition are "Democrats" by Camilla Nielsson (international premiere) and "Something Better to Come" by Hanna Polak (world premiere).

Joshua Oppenheimer's "The Look of Silence", which won the Grand Prix at the Venice Film Festival in September, is screening in IDFA's "cream of the crop" Masters programme. Oppenheimer will also be present at the festival as part of the Feature-length Competition jury.

See the full list of Danish films below.

Danish titles at IDFA 2014

Competition for Feature-length Documentary

"Democrats" / by Camilla Nielsson, Upfront Films

The director takes a close look at an authoritarian state on the verge of democratisation: See how Zimbabwe got a new constitution.

"Something Better to Come" / by Hanna Polak, Danish Documentary Production
For ten years, the director followed teenage girl Yula and her companions who live on the biggest garbage dump in Europe. + IDFA DOC U Competition

Competition for Mid-Length Documentary

"Warriors from the North" / by Søren Steen Jespersen, Made in Copenhagen

 A group of young Danish-Somali men join the Islamic terror organisation al-Shabaab to become suicide bombers in Somalia. But why do they do it?


"The Look of Silence" / by Joshua Oppenheimer, Final Cut for Real
The director's companion piece to his Oscar-nominated "The Act of Killing" revisits Indonesia's dark history, this time telling the story from the victims' perspective.

"The Arms Drop" / by Andreas Koefoed, Fridthjof Film
In 1995 a secret arms drop was set to take place in India. But nothing went according to plan. The film documents the affair that continues to impact the lives of everyone involved.


"The Circus Dynasty" / by Anders Riis-Hansen, Hansen og Pedersen Film og Fjernsyn
The director follows two circus families, the Berdinos and the Cassellys, as they pursue a union between the two youngest members of their families.

"Songs for Alexis" / by Elvira Lind, Copenhagen Bombay

Four years ago 18-year-old Ryan, a talented musician, came out as a transgender person and began the difficult transformation from girl to boy. Now Ryan has fallen in love with the beautiful Alexis. + IDFA DOC U Competition

"Mission Rape – A Tool of War" / by Katia Forbert Petersen and Annette Mari Olsen, Sfinx Film/TV
Some 25,000 to 40,000 women were victims of mass rape during the Balkan war 1992-95. The film follows some of these women, for whom the rapes remain a dark shadow in their lives.

The Female Gaze

"Good Things Await" / by Phie Ambo, Danish Documentary Production
The film follows a farmer, Niels Stokholm, fighting with the authorities to run his farm – supplier to Copenhagen's acclaimed Noma restaurant – his way, biodynamically.

Of Media and Men

"The Newsroom – Off the Record" / by Mikala Krogh, Danish Documentary Production
The director takes us behind the scenes at a Danish tabloid facing drastically declining print sales and increasing competition from new media.

Framing Reality

"The Act of Killing" (2012) / by Joshua Oppenheimer, Final Cut for Real
The director's first film about the Indonesian genocide shows the perpetrators reconstructing their roles in the mass murder in a film genre of their choice – from Western to musical.

"Hotel of the Stars" (1981) / by Jon Bang Carlsen, C&C Productions

Peopled by dreamers and wannabes, Hollywood's Montecito Hotel is a symbol of the deep divide between dream and reality, poverty and success.


"Cats in Riga" / by Jon Bang Carlsen
The director records the city of Riga and the social changes happening there by following a selective cast of cats.

Kids & Docs

"The Fencing Champion" / by Simon Lereng Wilmont, Final Cut for Real
Ruben has a great passion for fencing and is one of the best in his age group. We follow Ruben while he is preparing for the big annual championship.

"Malek Means Angel" / by Lea Hjort Mathiesen, National Film School of Denmark

She has the smile of an angel and the will of a warrior. Malek strives to one day become a professional fencer and spends every day training alongside her best friend Yassmine in a working class neighborhood in Tunis.

IDFA International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam / 19-30 November 2014