Ísold Uggadóttir, writer and director of And Breathe Normally, won the FIPRESCI critics’ award at the Göteborg Film Festival on Saturday, Vísir reports. This honor comes on the heels of Ísold’s Best Director win at the Sundance Film Festival at the end of January.
And Breathe Normally tells the story of two women — one an Icelander working at passport control, the other a Bissau-Guinean who is trying to get to Canada on a fake passport. Ísold developed her idea for the story while working as a volunteer at the Icelandic Red Cross, she explained in a recent interview with Variety. “…I wanted to bring together two very different female characters, exploring how they would and could influence the lives of one another, and possibly form an unlikely bond, also shedding light on the dire circumstances of asylum seekers in Iceland.”
In its motivation, the jury explained that “[t]he award goes to a film which deals with the huge problem of crossing borders in Europe and elsewhere. It is made in both a humouristic and touching way, with two strong female characters.” It was also commended for its “modern and experimental approach in cinematography, editing and sound design.”
Ísold says that she is “…pleased with the fantastically good feedback of viewers and colleagues at the festival. I look on it as a great honor to have won an international critics’ prize.”
And Breathe Normally will have its Icelandic premier in early March.