Three recent Icelandic movies that are totally worth your time.

Recent years have been good for the Icelandic film industry. Everyone has really stepped up their game when it comes to quality and entertainment value and we’ve seen some great movies come out of it. These new movies are not only popular in Iceland but they seem to have a global appeal and many of them have done extremely well at festivals around the world. Like the critically acclaimed Hrútar (Rams) which won awards at Cannes and Toronto International Film Festival and was nominated for the European Film awards to name a few. Not to mention the fact it basically won all the awards possible at the Icelandic Film Awards.

It’s a good movie, you should see it!

Anyway, after reading some article in the Icelandic media recently about the highest grossing movies in Iceland this year I thought I’d share with you three Icelandic movies I’ve seen this year that I think are all worth your time. They also happen to be three highest grossing movies in Iceland in 2017 by a landslide.

Ég man þig (I remember you)

Ég man þig is based on a book by the same name by Yrsa Sigurðardóttir that took Iceland by storm a few years ago. I even read it and I never have time to sit down and read. It’s a horror thriller, kind of, and the book got me so worked up that by the end of it I was looking behind doors to make sure no one was there.

The book did such an excellent job of building up suspense that I was really excited to see what they’d do with the movie. It’s maybe not the best Icelandic movie ever made but it did manage to make me jump out of my seat at least once and I left the movie theater with that same uneasy feeling the book gave me. It had enough twists and turns to keep me interested, even though I had read the book and knew was about to happen.

I didn’t love it but I did liked it and you might too.

Undir Trénu (Under the tree)

OK, let me just start by saying that I loved this movie. Loved it!

On the surface, it’s a movie about neighbors quarreling about a tree but it has many more layers than that. It’s kind of depressing but hilarious at the same time but you’re not quite sure whether it’s appropriate to laugh.

I’ve seen some mixed reviews about this movie and I’m not sure everyone will enjoy it but if you like dark humor and family dramas you should give it a chance. It’s doing well at the festivals and people are particularly happy with Edda Björgvinsdóttir in the role of the mother.

Hjartasteinn (Heartstone)

Hjartasteinn is a beautiful coming of age story about the friendship of two boys in a small town in Iceland. One fancies a girl, the other one fancies his friend. The young actors do a marvelous job with their parts and the surroundings are beautiful which adds to the overall feel of the movie.

I really enjoyed it and I’m not the only one because it’s been winning all kinds of awards all over the world since it first came out. It pulls at your heartstrings in all the right ways.

Have you seen any of these movies? What did you think?

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17 thoughts on “Three recent Icelandic movies that are totally worth your time.”

  1. Gwen Van der Zyppe says:

    I’ve seen “Hjartasteinn” this summer and it was impactful. Also insightful into rural Icelandic village life. Don’t miss it.

  2. Danielle says:

    i really want to see ‘i remember you’ – i havnt read the book yet, but have liked all of Yrsa’s books i’ve read so far – but no far not found a way to watch it!

    i am so impatient for the next series of Trapped! I think i’ve found and watched all the icelandic crime series that I can in the UK now, the last one i watched was The Lava Field.

  3. Barbara says:

    Any idea where we can see these in the U.S.?

    1. Matthew says:

      VUDU has I remember you for rent, and Heartstone for rent or purchase!

      Cant find Undir Trénu tho

    2. Gipsy says:

      I think I watched I remeber you on amazon

  4. Matthew says:

    i bought 101 Reykjavic (adult themed!) but totally forgot about region encoding so cant watch it! I suspect a conspiracy to prevent the world from seeing Icelandic movies…

  5. Jen K says:

    I noticed ‘I remember you’ in the Icelandair movie selection. Netflix has been adding Icelandic tv series to the line-up. I’ll have to watch to see if they’re adding movies. Thanks for the recommendations!

    1. mm Auður - I Heart Reykjavík says:

      I believe I saw Heartstone there too the last time I flew with them.

  6. Jono says:

    These all look good. The only places I have found to watch Icelandic films is to either buy the properly encoded dvd, Icelandic Cinema Online, or Netflix. I finally got to see the series “Trapped” on Netflix a couple of weeks ago. I will look for these films and anything else I can find. I have read I remember you as well as all of Yrsa’s translated works. It’s almost enough to make a person learn Icelandic just to be able to access all this wonderful stuff.

  7. Kiri Johansson says:

    I saw Hjartasteinn when doing some research for my new novel and liked it very much. Great movie giving an insight of Icelandic society.

  8. Cheryl McLaughlin says:

    we visited your wonderful country early this month. Our only regret (well besides not seeing the Aurora, but well, we were prepared to miss it ;-( ) —- is that we did not, during our week there, actually meet any Icelanders aside from store clerks , restaurant servers, and our hotel staff.
    We often travel with Roads Scholars or Grand Circle tours, and part of their programming is a visit to a local family of whatever area we are visiting. We get to ask questions and to spend an afternoon with a family of “natives.”
    OUr last 2 days were spent at a B and B, and i’d hoped that we’d have time for a chat with the owner, to hear a bit about what life is like for a typical family in Iceland, but our travel companions kept us so busy driving around to various beautiful places, that we became familiar with places, but not with people.
    Tonight, i googled “Iceland blogs” – hoping to find some that were written by “just regular folk” living in Iceland. To hear what a typical day is like there – to find out about kids attending schools (in our many long drives around the country, we only saw one building that looked like a school), about how a typical family in your country spends their evenings for instance. are there movie theaters? I am a quilter, and i googled to find if there are any fabric stores in the areas where we traveled but i came up with nothing. Are there typical needle arts that folks in your country enjoy and where would they get supplies?
    I hope that my question(s) makes sense and that you might be able to steer me toward that type of blog (and of course, regrettably, I don’t speak your language, so i’d wish for it to be in English. Thank you for any help you can give.

    1. mm Auður - I Heart Reykjavík says:

      I’m sorry but I don’t know anything about quilting or where to find quilting supplies in Iceland. The only thing I can think of is a store called Virka:

  9. Cheryl McLaughlin says:

    I wasn’t able to find any of the recommended movies – someone said Trapped was on Netflix, but i couldn’t find it doing a Netflix search ;-(

    1. mm Auður - I Heart Reykjavík says:

      It’s been a while since this post was written so things may have changed a bit. Maybe you can try Amazon?

  10. Matthew Paluch says:

    I was just told that Children of Nature (1991) is a must-see but i cant find it, any netflix/amazon/vudu search help appreciated!

    1. mm Auður - I Heart Reykjavík says:

      You can watch it here for 4 EUR:

      1. Matthew Paluch says:

        thanks!! new site to me so lots to explore!

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