Sweden, Denmark, Finland


A poignant story, told with sincerity and humor, about a young woman’s with her dramatic childhood, about her grief and the struggle to move on. A morning just before Christmas, Leena, 34, receives a phone call from a hospital in her childhood hometown telling her that her mother is dying. This news takes her on a journey to face her mother for the first time in her adult life. Leena has fought all her life to let go of her grief over her lost and dark childhood. She is now forced to deal with her past to be able to move on.

Director's Statement

Our past will always catch up with us. When I started working with this film I thought that the obvious theme was ”growing up in an abusive family”. A story about how terribly difficult it can be to be poor, from another country and unable to master the language. But as I got deeper into the story it struck me that it would be more interesting to combine the childhood story with a contemporary about the adult Leena. Together they tell the story about self-deception, to lie to yourself and the people around you. It is this story I want to tell and how you reach your resolution and how you can move on in life despite your past. In the film the adult Leena’s memories are almost physical, as in the film Dolores Claiborne (Taylor Hackford), where neither we, the audience, nor the mother (Kathy Bates) can protect herself from her memories, the past.

Cast & Crew

Directed by: Pernilla August

Written by: Pernilla August, Lolita Ray

Produced by: Ralf Karlsson, Helena Danielsson

Cinematography: Erik Molberg Hansen

Editing: Åsa Mossberg

Production Design: Anna Asp

Original Score: Magnus Jarlbo, Sebastian Öberg

Cast: Tehilla Blad, Noomi Rapace, Ola Rapace, Outi Mäenpää, Ville Virtanen

Nominations and Awards

  • Feature Film Selection 2011