RIFF Kicks Off with 'Bipolar Musical Documentary with Elephants' Skip to content

RIFF Kicks Off with ‘Bipolar Musical Documentary with Elephants’

By Larissa Kyzer

Photo: Þriðji Póllinn – The Third Pole, FB.

The 17th annual Reykjavík International Film Festival, or RIFF, will kick off this year on September 24 and, for the first time, will include online screenings and events, Vísir reports.

The festival will open with a night screening of The Third Pole, a “bipolar musical documentary with elephants” by author and former presidential candidate Andri Snær Magnason and visual artist and director Anní Ólafsdóttir.

Per the description on Andri Snær’s website, The Third Pole is “part road movie, part musical, part serious inquiry into the caverns of the mind” and “follows Anna Tara Edwards, an Icelander raised in Nepal, and legendary musician Högni Egilsson, as they journey to Anna’s childhood home in the mountain jungles to explore the afflictions and superpowers that come with bipolar disorder. Delving into their respective pasts through textured archival footage and home videos, the narrative follows their present-day quest to raise awareness about the disease and come to terms with the impact it’s had on their own lives.”

This is Anní Ólafsdóttir’s first feature-length film, but Andri Snær’s second foray into filmmaking, as he previously co-directed Dreamland, a documentary based on his book Dreamland – a Self Help Manual for a Frightened Nation.

RIFF will run from September 24 to October 20, with in-person screenings at Bíó Paradís and the Nordic House in Reykjavík. This year, the festival is also expanding its reach (and responding to the needs of the current moment) by offering online screenings and events as well. The festival will be highlighting European films this year, as the European Film Awards will be presented in Iceland in December.

See more about the festival, including information on the daily program and how to buy tickets (both available soon) in English here.


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