15 december 2021

Faith Can Move Mountains   NORWAY


Author: Silje Evensmo Jacobsen
Director: Silje Evensmo Jacobsen
Produced by: Ingvil Giske
Broadcast by: NRK1

A group of Greek Orthodox nuns settle down in a remote and beautiful village in Western Norway. They are planning to build a magnificent monastery on a steep and dangerous mountain overseeing the fjord. Penniless, but with a strong faith, they must adapt in the new surroundings and convince the locals to support the incredible project. The Mayor believes this is to be a unique opportunity to attract tourists, but others are more skeptical. A monastery intended to house a hundred nuns is not an everyday happenstance for the small community. The locals are divided; the sceptics believe the idea is just ridiculous, while their supporters cheer them on, contributing food and voluntary labour.

Jury laudatio:
A fascinating tale about the assumptions that we make about people who are different and how relationships can become confused because of these assumptions.
This is the story of a group of Greek Orthodox nuns, their efforts to establish a monastery on top of a mountain above a tiny Norwegian village, and the local population who are strongly divided about the project. The film not only shows the strong determination of the main character, the Abbess Thavoria, but also of the film maker who worked on the project for over five years.  The result: a beautiful documentary and well-crafted piece of work. The story is told in scenes without any voice overs and with a superbly edited soundtrack.