REVIEW – Hlynur Palmason’s feature film is breathtakingly beautiful, Louis Garrel’s is a pleasant surprise.
Godland: once upon a time
At the end of the 19thand century, a Danish pastor is on a mission to spread the good word in neighboring Iceland. The journey turns out to be tougher than expected. The monk stands out in the middle of the rustics who surround him. He wants to understand them. Wasted effort. Already, there is the language barrier. Nor are the customs the same. Crossing a flooded river turns into a disaster. On the spot, the misunderstandings continue. The Lutheran’s faith takes a hit. The eldest of his host does not leave him indifferent. The youngest is more whimsical.
He photographs the natives, lets them build a wooden church. Communities collide like flints. Violence is not absent from this harsh course, bathed in landscapes of an inhuman dimension, vertiginous waterfalls, lava flows, scree of greenery, nature marked by the seasons. The Icelandic Hlynur Palmason has a painter’s eye, an almost mythological breath. Godland does not leave ice. Square format, it is a beauty…