'GITARRMONGOT' ('The Guitar Mongoloid')

 

A 12-year-old boy with home-cooked punk songs; grown-up men who play with guns; a woman with paranoia; euphoric joy and purposeful destructivity - it is all contained in Swedish director Ruben Östlund's feature debut, 'Gitarrmongot ('The Guitar Mongoloid').

 

The film launched as a depiction of "the Sweden you knew existed but never have seen on film before." It had its world-premiere at the 2005 Moscow International Film Festival.

 

While studying in Grez-sur-Loing, France, for three months in 2001, "impulsively, I wrote down a lot of fragmentary scenes, with no context, except that the situations and the people in them were on the borderline of what is generally considered 'normal'. Even though the idea was that they should be used in the same film I had no idea how I should do it," Östlund recalled.

 

"Then one day back in Sweden I saw a young street musician (Erik Rutström) who was playing in Kungsgatan in Göteborg. His expression was uncensored, off guard, full of energy, and I was strongly moved. After this encounter I suddenly saw the film before me. Erik would be the red thread who would guide the audiences between the fragmentary scenes," he added.

 

"'The Guitar Mongoloid' is a result of fascination, intuition, accident, hubris, my aggression to today's film and media images, Kalle Boman, hard work, disgust, my former documentaries, Erik Rutström, the other cast, my adolescence, Gummo, a wish to be confirmed, other filmmakers' expressions, the High School for Photography and Film, Andrea Östlund née Friberg, my years as a ski filmmaker, everybody I know etc. etc. - with no order of precedence," Östlund concluded.

 

 

 

'GITARRMONGOT' ('The Guitar Mongoloid')
Excerpted from an article of The Nordic Council Film Prize
Nominations 2005


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