In 1933, 17-year-old Maren (Emilie Kroyer Koppel) is seduced by the jazz scene in Copenhagen; since her behavior is deemed anti-social, she’s sent to an institution for unruly young women. A dark chapter in the history of Denmark (and many other countries) is chronicled in this drama that shares superficial similarities with One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest (1975). Based on real events, depicting an institution on a small isolated island, the film follows two young women who challenge a system that aims to crush their spirit. Heartbreaking and infuriating, with a brooding music score and a moving performance by Kroyer Koppel.
2023-Denmark. 134 min. Color. Produced by Matilda Appelin. Directed by Malou Reymann. Screenplay: Malou Reymann, Sara Isabella Jønsson Vedde. Music: Lisa Montan. Cast: Emilie Kroyer Koppel (Maren), Jessica Dinnage (Sørine), Lene Maria Christensen (Miss Nielsen), Amalie Drud Abildgaard, Anders Heinrichsen.
Trivia: Original title: Ustyrlig.
Last word: “When I first heard about the women’s home in Sprogø, I felt like it had to be made into a film and I was amazed that it hadn’t actually been made yet […] I hope people will think about how relevant this film is today, even though it takes place in the 1930s. Controlling women’s bodies is sadly still very much an issue we’re struggling with today.” (Reymann, Women and Hollywood)