Premiere at Göteborg Film Festival 2023, section Nordic Light.
STRINGS – The many versions of you.
A game with explosives backfires and we are thrown back in time into a crucial year in a group of young people’s lives. Strings is a tender yet humorous everyday poetic depiction of young people on a collision course with an alienated adult world.
The film’s message is about the complexities of growing up and understanding the world around you, class, death and relationships.
I am interested in how movies, porno and music dictates adulthood in a way that maintains the status quo. How boys passively and sometimes actively consume or are trained to take on a manhood they don’t identify themselves with. The same goes for the girl in the gang and what she gets exposed to through her mother. In Strings we meet the characters in different situations, where their home condi- tions all give them something to hide, a point of shame or fear.
Strings has a cinematographic language that combines realism and anti-realism, the same way as its multi-layered story. It starts with one of the ending scenes and the narration of Gabriel, one of the characters. We are inside his mind, where time and space are relative and connected to his feelings.
What follows are scenes in one year of the youngsters lives, captured in a documentary style; realistic and authentic.
The authenticity when the group interacts is interrupted by the imagery coming from Gabriel’s mind. Sometimes weird and shaky, sometimes detailed and aestheticized. Gabriel tells us how he always recalls a fall in slow motion. Distortion in time is a consequence or a kind of augmented reality emerging from an intense feeling, as a memory that keeps repeating itself.
As the story approaches the end, we understand his idea of parallel timelines in life. Maybe we die in one timeline, but keep living in another one. Reflections, mirrors and windows separates the young characters from their parents or keeps them invisible for the adults.
Strings is a coming of age film that also appeals to older audiences.
The primary audience is 13-19, but through test screenings we have seen that the film also appeals to adults (25-55).