Directed by Jorunn Myklebust Syversen
Norway | 94 min | 2019 | drama | Norwegian
On the surface, everything seems perfect. 19-year-old Mirjam is the stepdaughter of the charismatic pastor of an evangelical movement called The Freedom. As a world champion in disco freestyle dancing and leader of the youth group in the congregation, Mirjam is the pride of the church. Whilst defending her world title, she collapses on stage. This makes her start to question her faith. Her family’s solution is for her to be a better believer. Mirjam tries, but her body continues to fail her. Frustrated by the feeling of not being seen and in search of answers, she is drawn to a stricter, more conservative congregation. Secretly she leaves for their summer camp.
Starring Josefine Frida (SKAM series)
Director & Scriptwriter: Jorunn Myklebust Syversen
Cinematography: Marius Matzow Gulbrandsen
Editing: Frida Eggum Michaelsen, Mina Nybakke
Music: Thomas Helland
Production Company: MER FILM AS
Producer: Maria Ekerhovd
Cast: Josefine Frida (SKAM series), Kjærsti Odden Skjeldal, Nicolai Cleve Broch, Andrea Bræin Hovig, Espen Klouman Høiner, Fredericke Rustad Hellerud
Festivals & Awards
Toronto International Film Festival – Discovery
San Sebastian International Film Festival – New Directors
surprising and increasingly unnerving
impressively played by Josefine Frida
film that tackles serious issues without resolving them in simple ways.
The canvas may be strewn with glitter and glory, but beneath the surface Syversen provides a chilling look at how religion can be used to ignore deeper personal traumas, convincing youngsters to turn to god when they should perhaps be turning to therapy or something more probing.
The Hollywood Reporter
Director Jorunn Myklebust Syversen confidently captures the energy and emptiness of Mirjam’s two professional worlds, but it is her lingering on the personal, private one where the film shines.
It does what a good drama (or horror) film should do, it allows the audience to consider its own value systems in its empathy of the main character, and the situation she finds herself in. Disco does so with a different kind of poise and grace.
Frida gives a breakthrough performance in her first film role, and her ability to switch from a teen girl
suffering in silence to an up-beat world class performer is fantastic. She completely steals the show
and carries it all the way (…).
The Simple Cinephile
evocative, visual storytelling (…) Disco is a great showcase for cinematographer Marius Matzow
One of TIFF 2019’s most exciting emerging actors to watch