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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10 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.

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