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Documentary Film
90 minutes

Credits DOK Leipzig Logo

Antonio Russo Merenda, Hysteria Film AB
Tora Mårtens
Andreas Unge
Erik Vallsten
Tora Mårtens
The two Colombian brothers Pablo and Fernando are around 20 and couldn’t be more different. Pablo lives in Colombia, has clear goals and realises them with determination. Fernando, only a few years younger, is hanging out in Stockholm. A junkie with no direction, about to crash. And a therapy in Colombia supervised by Pablo is supposed to help? Tora Mårten’s film follows the unequal brothers and Olga, their mother, whose role in Fernando’s misery emerges more clearly the longer we observe them, over a period of one and a half years. Pablo has his share of the responsibility, too. He calls his younger brother Ferdi and treats him accordingly: he plans the therapy, demands, organises. They both love him, and that’s Fernando’s problem. How to escape this loving attention that bears down on him like lead? “Colombianos” displays a great sense of situations, quiet nuances and silent observations in this tale of a family whose balance of relationships is being re-arranged. In a reversal of his status as the baby of the family, Fernando forms the centre of gravity around which old family ties are dissolving to re-emerge on a new, cleansed level. Olga attends a self-help group to analyse her own behaviour. Pablo increases the pressure and throws off the responsibility for his brother, who finally prevails and returns to Sweden alone. Cut. A year later. Life sometimes does have happy endings. Just like the movies.

Matthias Heeder

Golden Dove in the International Competition Documentary Film 2012