MFF Praha - Febiofest
PRAGUE IFF – FEBIOFEST 2021 HAS DEDICATE A WHOLE PROFILE SECTION TO ONE OF THE BEST EUROPEAN CINEMATOGRAPHERS. PART OF THE PROGRAMME WAS A MASTERCLASS, WHERE STURLA BRANDTH GRØVLEN ANSWERED QUESTIONS FROM ALEŠ STUCHLÝ AS WELL AS THE AUDIENCE.
The Masterclass, which was part of the Mental Hygiene with Aleš Stuchlý series, started with a clip from the thriller Victoria. This single-take film catapulted Grøvlen to fame in 2015. “Sebastian Schipper, the director, told me from the start that he wanted the camera work to evoke a war photographer in a war zone, observing the action as it happens,” the Norwegian-born cinematographer, who now lives in Denmark, reminisced. He also revealed how many tries the crew needed to get the single-take film on camera: “Three. The first take was too gentle for Sebastian – we had all been super careful, we just wanted to get through it without messing up. The second time was the opposite, there was lots of noise and yelling, the director was actually threatening to kick the actors out. It took a third time to find the perfect balance.”
Films from the Febiofest programme of course did not go unmentioned during the Masterclass: The audio-visual sci-fi poem Last and First Men, for which Grøvlen shot brutalist monumental architecture from former Yugoslavia on 16mm black-and-white film, Heartstone, where he shot child actors up close to capture their energy, or the unconventional work on Shirley, directed by Josephine Decker. “She has a very specific approach to film, she works in the moment, so I tried to make a sort of creative map of her brain and fit together all of her ideas, which were sometimes quite disparate.”
The hit film Another Round, which has been loved by audiences and critics alike and won an Oscar this year, also came up. “After his film Kursk, the director, Thomas Vinterberg, wanted to come back to his roots and to the Dogma movement, and make a film built on characters, with a playful, raw energy,” Grøvlen told the audience and went on to describe how he filmed drunkenness or Mads Mikkelsen’s dancing scene.
The Febiofest screenings of Last and First Men is going on the Febiofest Regions Tour.