Lia HIETALA, Hannah REINIKAINEN
gender / queer / identity / love
Seventeen-year-old Amber and best friend Sebastian refuse to let society label their gender. Moving through a spectrum of fluid identities, they dream together, party together, and form friendships with likeminded people. The queer teenagers inhabit an open and loving world far away from the judging eyes of others, in which everything seems possible. But when Amber falls in love with Charlie, their utopian world is shaken to its core. Trust issues begin to emerge, and in the midst of it all, Amber has to face going through their transition alone.
Amber is a non-binary teenager. (Non-binary gender describes an individual who refuses to fit the male and female binary spectrum.) Amber, who likes to be called in the neutral pronoun "them" instead of "him" or "her," is free to wear clothes, behave, love, and live in their own way. The documentary is a three-year record of Amber. During this period, Amber experiences a significant change in relationship, explores identity issues, and makes an important decision. At the beginning of the film, Amber shares the most important relationship since childhood with Sebastian. Beyond the stereotype associated with gender, the two youngsters fully express themselves, keeping their special friendship. However, life takes an unexpected turn. As new romance begins, Amber and Sebastian's relationship changes, and Amber's life makes a transition in Amber's own rhythm and speed. Following Amber's candid, delightful journey, viewers encounter distinctive landscapes. Sometimes, Amber holds the camera to explore the inner space. The film contains childhood home videos, mobile phone videos, and Snapchat videos. Glowing in the sunlight, Amber's brave faces leave a lasting impression. [SON Sinae]
|109||2020-09-11 | 14:30 - 15:46||MEGABOX SangamWorldcup 4|
|328||2020-09-13 | 19:30 - 20:46||INDIESPACE|
Born 1993 in Stockholm, Sweden, HIETALA has her main base in Stockholm but her first short film If I Say No (2016) is financed and takes place in Norway. The film awarded her the Nordnorsk Film Center’s scholarship Springbett, which resulted in her second short film My Gay Sister (2017). The film became very successful and won the world’s most prestigious queer film prize: the Teddy Award for best short film, at the Berlin International Film Festival. HIETALA continues to work with both fiction and documentary and is currently studying for a bachelor in fine arts at The University of Arts, Crafts and Design in Stockholm. Always Amber is her first feature film.
Hannah REINIKAINEN was born 1992 in Stockholm, Sweden. She has been studying journalism at the University of Stockholm and documentary filmmaking at Biskops-Arnö. Since her studies she has been working at the production company Story, for example as a director’s assistant and editor on Shapeshifters (2017) by Sophie VUKOVIĆ. She has previously directed two short films Nybohovsbacken (2016) and She only beat the one she loves (2017). Always Amber is her first feature film.
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