Archive of films A Song for Martin / En sang för Martin

Denmark / Sweden
2001, 117 min

Section: Official Selection - Competition
Year: 2001


Symphony violinist Barbara Hartman has been married for years and has two adult children, the same as conductor and composer Martin Fischer who is practising a new piece with the orchestra. They are both at the age when they don’t think much about their feelings, and then a miracle happens. Two mature people fall deeply in love with each other and decide to live together – not secretly but as husband and wife. Divorce is not easy for either of them, indeed Barbara must pay for this new love with the loss of her son because he refuses to admit that she has a right to be happy. Martin is full of energy and begins composing a new opera; Barbara helps him and music accompanies every step of their new life together. Problems with their children are gradually solved and everyone respects the wise and gracious Martin as the head of their extended family. However, Martin begins to suffer from unexpected losses of memory and is diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease. The struggle between love and this incurable, debilitating disease is unfair, desperate, full of pain, and even brings a new revelation. . . .

About the director

Bille August (b. 1948, Denmark) studied in Stockholm and worked primarily in Sweden before becoming an independent director. He debuted with In My Life (1979) followed by Zappa (1982) and Twist and Shout (1985). August made a name on the international scene with Pelle the Conqueror (1987) which took the Palme d’Or at Cannes as well as a Golden Globe and Oscar for Best Foreign Language Film. Then Ingmar Bergman selected him to direct his script for Best Intentions and in 1992 August won his second Palme d’Or with the film he made from it. He then shot an American production of House of the Spirits (1993) starring Meryl Streep, Glenn Close and Jeremy Irons, followed by a grand epic story based on Selma Lagerlöf’s novel Jerusalem (film and television series), a film version of Smilla’s Sense of Snow (1996) by Danish writer Peter Hoeg starring Julia Ormond, and a grandiose adaptation of Hugo’s Les Miserables (1997) with Liam Neeson cast as Jean Valjean.

About the film

Black & white, 35 mm

Section: Official Selection - Competition
Director: Bille August
Screenplay: Bille August , podle románu Ully Isakssonové /based upon the novel Ulla Isaksson "Boken om E"
Dir. of Photography: Jörgen Persson
Music: Stefan Nilsson
Editor: Janus Billeskov Jansen
Producer: Lars Kolvig, Michael Obel, Bille August
Production: Moonlight Filmproduction & Svenska Filmkompaniet
Cast: Sven Wollter, Viveka Seldahl, Reine Brynolfsson, Lisa Werlinder, Linda Källgren, Peter Engman, Klas Ahlstedt, Kristina Törnqist, Jonas Falk

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