Directed by Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson
Iceland, Denmark, Sweden, The Netherlands, Czechia | 123 min | 2022 | Icelandic

Addi, a boy raised by a clairvoyant mother, decides to adopt a bullied misfit into his gang of outsiders. Left to their own devices, the boys explore aggression and violence but also learn about loyalty and love. As the group’s behavior escalates towards life-threatening situations, Addi begins to experience a series of dreamlike visions. Can his newfound intuition guide him and his friends back to a safer path, or will they dive irrevocably into further violence?


Director: Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson

Cinematography: Sturla Brandth Grøvlen


Birgir Dagur Bjarkason – Addi
Áskell Einar Pálmason – Balli
Viktor Benóný Benediktsson – Konni
Snorri Rafn Frímannsson – Siggi
Aníta Briem – Guðrún
Ísgerður Gunnarsdóttir – Hulda
Ólafur Darri Ólafsson – Svenni

Production Company: Join Motion Pictures 
Co-production Companies: Motor Productions (Denmark), Hobab and Film i Väst (Sweden), Bastide Films (The Netherlands) and Negativ (Czech Republic)
With support of: Icelandic Film Centre, Iceland’s Ministry of Industries and Innovation, the Icelandic National Broadcasting Service RÚV, Sena, Danish Film Institute, DR, Scanbox, Swedish Film Institute, Film i Väst, Netherlands Film Fund, Netherlands Film Production Incentive, Czech Film Fund, Nordisk Film & TV fond, and Eurimages.

  • Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson
    Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson

Festivals & Awards

  • Berlinale Panorama – Europa Cinemas Label
  • Karlovy Vary International Film Festival – Horizons
  • Mastercard OFF CAMERA – Competition
  • Transilvania International Film Festival – Competition
  • Guadalajara International Film Festival – Premio Maguey Competition

press quotes

“Beautiful Beings is the latest triumph from (…) Gudmundur Arnar Gudmundsson, whose distinctive lyrical style makes him one of the most impressive talents on the international indie film scene.”

“The director avoids simplistic solutions in a subtle narrative that uses its ample running time to explore every single chink of the boys’ developing personalities and how they react with each other.”

“Silver Bear awarded DoP Starla Brandth Grovlen (Victoria) works wonders with his camera”



„a compelling mix of warmth and darkness that will shake you up before it will melt your heart”

“Beautiful Beings takes on the glamour and the anxieties that define teenagehood”

“as humanistic as it is unsettling.”

“much of the film’s raw effectiveness is due to the young cast’s wisdom and effortless on-screen chemistry.”

“There is honesty to the central performances that endears the boys to the viewers”

“(Beautiful Beings) focuses on delivering a unique presentation – impressionistic imagery and gentle nods at magical realism complement a more grounded, down-to-earth aesthetic; neither style dominates, rather, they converse and flirt with one another.”



“an affecting coming-of-age melodrama that gently dissects various performances of masculinity”

Beautiful Beings gradually evolves into an unexpectedly sensual and dreamlike (and often nightmarish) experience with plenty of surprises in store for the audience”

“At its core, this is a moving tale of friendship and recovery”

“Guðmundsson portrays this co-existence of masculine aggression and soothing tenderness with vivid, richly textured images”

“this lovely Icelandic drama turns into a sensitively-told tale of healing and growth in Guðmundsson’s capable hands”



“Gudmundur Arnar Gudmundsson’s sophomore Icelandic feature finds tenderness in a cruel adolescent world”

“The impressive second feature from Gudmundur Arnar Gudmundsson confronts the feral cruelty and violence of children on the cusp of adulthood, but finds also a tenderness amid the sharp edges and posturing”

“Gudmundsson clearly has strong instincts for casting and a knack for coaxing nuanced performances from young actors”



“Its premise seems to lean heavily on familiar tropes, but the magic is in the execution.”

“Director Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson has delivered a film with a distinctive freshness, and a grimly compelling plausibility”

“There’s a real camaraderie amongst the young cast, with the strength of the writing combining with the actors’ characterisations to ensure that the roles all seem like fully realised people”

“intelligent and confident, and more than a bit unsettling in places”


Guðmundur Arnar Guðmundsson

Gudmundur Arnar graduated in Fine Art and studied screenwriting. His short films and feature debut have been showcased and awarded in numerous festivals. Among these accolades are Cannes Film Festival, Venice Film Festival and a nomination for the European Film Awards. His debut feature Heartstone premiered in the Venice Days Competition in 2016 and ended up collecting over 50 awards worldwide.