ARCTIC CRIME & PUNISHMENT

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ILULISSAT.  GREENLAND.

A FRONTIER TOWN 250 MILES NORTH OF The ARCTIC CIRCLE.

A COMMUNITY OF HUNTERS AND FISHERMEN WITH FIVE REGULAR POLICEMEN, ONE AMATEUR JUDGE AND A VERY HIGH INCIDENCE OF VIOLENT CRIME.

 
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Naalu Jeremiassen, a mother of four, and Jens Reimer, a hunter, both find themselves in police detention. 

She has killed her husband.  He has punched and kicked his wife to within an inch of her life. 

Neither can remember exactly what happened.

 

SYNOPSIS

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The film sets an intimate exploration of their cases in the context of a hunter gatherer society whose notion of justice and punishment is extremely tolerant, but whose very way of life is collapsing in the face of 'progress'.

 
In principal, we cannot expel people, throw them out of society, here in Greenland. We need all the people we have, and we have to accept those that we have been given. In Europe you can afford to sweep people under the carpet.
— District Court Judge, Jens Keldsen .
 
 

FILM STILLS

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BACKGROUND

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In Greenland’s small isolated communities, people depend on each other to survive. But how do you judge and punish a criminal when you can’t afford to do without him?  Every individual is invaluable, and a ‘wrong-doer’ cannot be simply expelled or locked up. 

I was interested to find out what a community in which tolerance was a matter of survival could teach us about justice.

The film reveals an extraordinary cycle of violence within one family, a woman who has murdered her husband coming to understand her father who had murdered her mother.

The Greenlanders reveal themselves in an extremely intimate and honest way.  Through their testimony, I hope that ‘Arctic Crime & Punishment’ offers the audience the possibility of empathising not with ‘criminals’ but with people who have made mistakes, mistakes that are all too easily made.

 

PRODUCTION STILLS

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PRODUCTION TEAM

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An international co-production between
DIVERSE PRODUCTIONS (UK) & ANGEL FILMS (DK)

for

CHANNEL 4
and
THE DANISH FILM INSTITUTE.

Directed by
SASHA SNOW

Produced by
DAVID KATZNELSON

Executive Producer
ROY ACKERMAN

Photography
DAVID KATZNELSON & SASHA SNOW

Film Editor
TORKEL GJORV

Music
LEE BAKER

Dubbing Mixer
SVEN TAITS

EXCERPT

PRESS/AWARDS

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A beautifully shot, intelligent, atmospheric and completely unsensationalised account of Greenland’s unique justice system, set against the background of a huge culture shift which has bred a plethora of social problems. Superb.
— TIME OUT
Quietly sensational.
— RADIO TIMES
A bleak but gripping film that takes us into an entirely foreign world but is wisely content to leave us without any pat answers to the questions raised.
— DAILY TELEGRAPH
Absorbing, atmospheric and genuinely illuminating.
— THE TIMES

NOMINATED FOR AN RTS AWARD FOR 'DOCUMENTARY LIGHTING & PHOTOGRAPHY', 2006.

 
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'Arctic Crime & Punishment' is available for sale on DVD (Region free PAL).

Please sent a request via e-mail.

 

SOUNDTRACK