Stories from Haadland
|Stories from Haadland|
Theatrical release poster
|Directed by||Analena Hanksdohter|
|Screenplay by||Daphne Katsaridi (Exile)|
Mâþijas Freidrikssun (Like Folk Songs)
Aniika Mâþijasdohter (Salt Air)
Herman Alanssun (This Godforsaken Mess)
Analena Hanksdohter (I Don't Belong)
|Music by||Hilda en Mâþi|
|24 October 2022 (Montecara)|
18 November 2022 (Azmara)
Stories from Haadland (Azmaran: Jeśehten fân Haadland) is a 2022 Azmaran anthology film with elements of romance, drama and comedy consisting of five short films themed around the life of young people in the "outer Azmaran" province of Haadland.
The film marked the directorial debut of Analena Hanksdohter, who also wrote the semi-autobiographical fifth chapter of the film, I Don't Belong, with the other four chapters (Exile, Like Folk Songs, Salt Air and This Godforsaken Mess) being written by Daphne Katsaridi, Mâþijas Freidrikssun, Aniika Mâþijasdohter and Herman Alanssun respectively.
The film was premiered on the 24th October 2022 at the 83rd Montecara Film Festival and will receive a theatrical release in Azmara on 18 November 2022.
Ioannis "Yanis" and Katerina Stavridis move from Piraea to the Azmaran village of Kliftuun, Haadland in search of better economic opportunities. Opening a convenience store, the couple slowly adapt to the Azmaran way of life while Katerina learns she is pregnant. The chapter shows the attempts of Yanis and Katerina to integrate into Azmaran culture and the locals of Kliftuun's way of life, developing knowledge of various customs through their interactions with the villagers.
In one scene couple are invited round for drinks by their neighbour, an elderly widow called Maarija, resulting in an exchange in which the three bond over their shared experiences as Maarija recalls the tale of older half-brother who had died in Piraea fighting in the Solarian War as part of the Community of Nations intervention. Another scene shows the ramifications of anti-immigration sentiment in Azmara as the couple's convenience store is graffitied with the phrase "go back home", with the psychological effects of Yanis struggling to continue running the store the next day as Katerina becomes increasingly unable to help in the daily management of the store due to her late pregnancy.
The final scene of the chapter shows the couple welcoming their daughter, Themis Yanisdohter-Stavridis, into the world at Sooþbryg Hospital.
Like Folk Songs
Alana Stefansdohter is a newly-graduated humanities teacher at a comprehensive school in the seaside town of Lauh-Walden. Starting her second year of teaching, she is assigned a Ninth Year class and is disturbed at their lack of interest in the world around them and desire to change it. Fiercely proud of her "outer Azmaran" working-class identity, Alana sets out to try to try and instill the importance of civic participation in the students, with a goal of teaching humanities while emphasising the impacts on Azmaran history of activism and agitation by common people.
Fiercely independent and increasingly engrossed in her "project", Alana comes into conflict with her fellow teachers and increasingly ignores her boyfriend Helmut. At the end of her lessons completing political education for her students, Alana tries teaching her students the importance of recent political issues, discussing issues such as climate change, LGBT rights, the federalisation of Azmara and the future of the welfare state. Inspired by this, many of her students end up skipping school to protest the provincial government over climate action in Cârlesby in a move that lands Alana in significant trouble with the school's management. The film however ends with Alana reflecting that she had "succeeded as a teacher" by imbuing her students with "a sense of justice and a social consciousness" while out for a drink with Helmut.
Frei Johanssun, an introverted 17-year old from the small coastal town of Aawenmaþ, comes out as gay to his single mother, Stefanija over dinner. Initially shocked, Stefanija soon comes to accept Frei's identity. Meanwhile, Jorś and his family moved to Aawenmaþ from central Aalmsted after his civil servant father is assigned a job working for economic development in the region and the two run into each other in Jorś's first day at Aawenmaþ Gâlykskul. Immediately attracted to him, Frei is encouraged to pursue him by his childhood friend, Ana, yet Frei is distraught after seeing Jorś accept an offer of a date from a girl in his class, convinced he is heterosexual.
However, Frei comes to befriends Jorś when paired with him for a biology project and the two increasingly become close and share time together. On a visit to Jorś's house, Frei learns Jorś is bisexual yet was concerned about being public about his identity in rural Azmara, being concerned about the prospect of less accepting attitudes compared to his native Aalmsted. While Frei chastises Jorś and emphasises Haadland's historical legacy as a haven of political radicalism, the two embrace and decide to experiment with a romantic relationship, with the final scene of the chapter showing the two kiss on Aawenmaþ beach at a class barbecue.
This Godforsaken Mess
Petur Ryginssun is laid off from his job, leaving him and girlfriend Maarija Jâkobsdohter with little income in the onset of winter. While Petur begins claiming unemployment insurance, the couple find the money provided from the payments to provide little solace as they struggle to muster up the funds to cover the heating and electricity bills for their flat as Maarija and Petur struggle to find stable employment to bring in extra income.
As the couple's situation gets increasingly desperate, their relationship begins to fracture as the two begin to increasingly fight and Petur turns to increasingly destructive behaviours to cope with the stresses placed on him. This causes further tension between him and Maarija, who frequently turns away from Petur and, ultimately seeing their prospects both as a viable couple and economically as significantly damaged, ends her relationship with him and moves in with her friend Raśel.
Distraught and hopeless at his lack of a job and the end of his relationship, Petur ends up getting drunk and into a fight at a bar and is hospitalised. Hearing of the incident from mutual friends, Maarija reaches out to him and the two resume their relationship as Maarija is hired as a receptionist at Raśel's place of work and the two manage to remedy their financial situation.
I Don't Belong
Freija Maþeisdohter, a confident young woman at the top of the intellectual and social pecking order at Heuthenberg Galukskoel, is accepted into the University of Aalmsted to study engineering. The only student accepted into the elite institution from her school, Freija is ecstatic. After seeing off her friends with a quiet party, Freija leaves behind Heuthenberg Docks to travel to Aalmsted Technical Institute.
While initially enthusiastic, Freija as a working-class woman from outer Azmara finds herself an outcast in the male and middle-class dominated Technical Institute and soon grows disenchanted with the party-oriented lifestyle of many of the Institute's students and finds their lack of concern about money and the plight of the country's working class disturbing as she takes on shifts as a waitress in a cocktail bar to cover her living expenses, and is incensed after being mocked at a social event for her IJssentaal-influenced accent.
Politically motivated by the experiences, Freija joins the Aalmsted Young Socialists and is initially relieved to socialise with like-minded individuals who share her concerns over gender and economic inequality yet ultimately finds the organisation's members little better than the engineering students she had grown disenchanted by, finding its members more interested in performative activism and largely ignorant of the true struggles of the country's working classes.
Depressed and isolated, Freija heads back home for the Nativity break and heads out for the evening with her friends from school in which she relays her experiences. While initially considering dropping out of university, seeing Heuthenberg as the only place she has truly belonged, she becomes inspired to work to make the country's elite universities a more accessible experience for people like her, with the film ending with her opening her laptop in her room in Heuthenberg ready to start her advocacy.
Like Folk Songs
This Godforsaken Mess
I Don't Belong
Production on the film began in late 2020 after a meeting between Analena Hanksdohter, Aniika Mâþijasdohter and Daphne Katsaridi after realising a connection in themes between short screenplays the three had written and the potential for a joint cinematic project using them exploring Haadlandic and in general "outer Azmaran" identity. However, feeling the three scripts alone did not fully develop the theme, Daphne requested that her husband, Herman Alanssun, contribute a script to flesh out the developing script for the anthology film.
In an interview, Daphne admitted that she emailed the film's fifth writer and the spouse of Thingspeaker Sofija Anasdohter, Mâþijas Freidrikssun, "as a joke", not expecting him to respond, but got a response in early 2021 expressing his interest in the idea and sending a draft screenplay for a "character study" he had been working on.
After the script was finalised in April 2021, production began with Analena Hanksdohter as director in June, with actors Nikos Papandreou, Themis Samaras, Maarijana Wiljâmsdohter, Aleksander Alekssun, Aksel Freissun, Freidrik Jonssun, Jana Hansdohter, Lorens Askerssun and Lilije Þurisasdohter being cast in leading roles. Filming largely took place in a variety of locations around Haadland, with the towns and villages of Filtuun, Sooþbryg, Lauh-Walden, Hoorfeld and Heuthenberg being used for various portions of the film, yet significant portions of I Don't Belong were filmed in Eleinasburg, Aalmsted.