IKEA, this myth of our time constitutes the central element around which a whole series of stories evolves which have been invented by students in the department "Dramatic theory and script development" of the University for Film and Television in Munich. Under the guidance of the German director and professor Doris Doerrie the five best stories were chosen in order to develop them further up to the point in which they ady to be realized. The result is an intriguing project for an episodic film that represents at the same time the final film project of five excellent film students who will then graduate.
"Midsommar Stories" tells the stories of a few people who are driven by the most different dreams, needs and fears. At a certain point in the life of each of them the "paradise of furniture" IKEA plays a crucial role - in a comical or in a tragical way. IKEA can be the arena for the wildest adventures, as much as for the horrible fight of almost destroyed people or for the sudden reappearance of good luck and happiness. This way a multicolored image of human existences is created.
by Andi Niessner and Markus Krämer
One year before the reunification, Jaqueline a young woman works in a factory that also produces some furniture for IKEA. She suffers under the political system of the GDR. Sabotage is the only way for Jacqueline to express her rage and her pain. She wants to leave the state with her boy-friend Roland. At the attempt to cross the border to the Fed-eral German Republic, they are arrested. In the cross examination Roland just wants to save his neck and puts all the blame on Jacqueline. She is put into a worn-down prison for women. After the reunification Jacqueline moves to Munich; but the dreadful experiences of her imprisonment catch up on her. By chance she meets one day Roland who has been living a well-established life in Munich. An old deep wound is ripped up again. But then she gets to know Klaus, a charming man. A story about the "old" and the "new Germany" and about a strong woman with an undestroyable will not only to survive but also to live.A story about the "old" and the "new Germany" and about a strong woman with an undestroyable will not only to survive but also to live.
by Michael Chauvistré
You can go on a trip around the world with the help of a "PAX", one of the IKEA-wardrobes: get in, close the doors, and - oops! - you get off in another part of the world, provided that there is another "PAX". Karla, the nine year-old daughter of Melanie and Martin, enjoys herself while searching for easter-eggs; but all of sudden she has completely disappeared. Her brother Phillip saw her for the last time inside the wardrobe. Martin decides to inquire more closely what has happened and unexpectedly finds himself at a IKEA shopping-center in the USA. Annika is there, too. The two of them go on a journey around the planet and by chance meet the rest of the family in Africa. From this crazy world-tour they take home with them a new freshness and energy that give their every-day world in a suburb of Munich some funny sparkling lightness they never felt before. A fabulously witty comedy.
The Goblins are coming
by Livia Vogt
"Always her, her, her..." - Seven year-old Lilly can hardly bear any longer the tragedy that is happening around her older sister Juliy who is anorexic. The disease has broken up the former closeness between the two sisters. Lilly's parents are much too concerned about their older daughter to be able to really take care of the younger one. The day however that the whole family is looking around at IKEA to buy new furniture for Julia's room, Lilly finds a new friend. The dark-haired girl is a little magician and gives her a "Goblin", a cute fabulous animal from Scandinavia. By the help of this new little compagnon Lilly creates her own world in which she feels at home.A sensitive fairy-tale about childhood, adolescence and the need for love.
At the Edge
by Heike Wasem
Thirty year-old Edmund is the son of a farmer, but without any fields to till since his father sold the property. Like so many others who live at the edge of big cities Edmund is torn between rural traditions and industrial progress. Where in former times the fields stretched out stands now an IKEA shopping-center. Father and son, who still live together, work as low-rate employees for the company. The day of his birthday Edmund escapes emptiness of his life for a few hours - just about long enough to enrage him even further. At the end of an exciting night he is hospitalized after having hurt himself on purpose. At the hospital he experiences for a short moment a closeness that has up to this very moment never existed in his life. He begins to reconcile himself with his himself and his life. A dense story about the desire of having a home and a personal identity.
The empty bed
by Elena Alvarez
A lyrical song about hopes and desires. Lene's boy-friend has just broken up with her. Now she sits there - without any furniture except for a four-poster bed which reminds her of the she has lost. She desperately need a new bed without the painful marks of the latest past. In the world of the happy couples at IKEA Lene feels lost and lonesome. She just wants the whole thing to be done with. But unfortunately she left a small trace of varnish with her car-door on the car next to hers at the parking lot. She gets into a crazy situation and unexpectedly regains part of light-heartedness. A bittersweet story about love, couples and common people.
„The young directors show cracks and turning points in the ‚pretty, light Ikea-World' - and courage to start anew."
„Casually, without giving much away, director Heike Wasem opens her ‚story' [‚Am Rande']. With no need for a lofty new beginning, she creates a plausible path to freedom for her protagonist.“
Neue Osnabrücker Zeitung:
„Comic, tragic, fabulous - five budding directors have explored their possibilities and created a multi-faceted image of being human in an intriguing episode-film, laid-back and entertaining.“
„The play on the myth worked. The furniture-factory did function well as a protagonist - all through the 90 minutes.“
„Aside from the theme, the short films share a love for experiment and detail.“
- 33. Internationale Hofer Filmtage (Hof, 1999)
- 26. Internationales Filmwochenende (Würzburg, 2000)
- International Film Festival of Kerala (Indien, 2000)
- Cannes International Film Festival 2000 (Cannes, 2000)
- Maine International Film Festival (Maine, 2000)
- Sarasota Film Festival (Sarasota, 2001)
- Festival des Deutschen Films (Kapstadt/Pretoria, 2001)
- 35 mm, with or without english subtitles, Digi-Betacam
- DVDs in German and English (shop)
- Title: Midsommar Stories (1999)
- Running time: 98 minutes
- Written by: Elena Alvarez, Michael Chauvistré, Andi Niessner, Livia Vogt, Heike Wasem
- Directed by: Elena Alvarez, Michael Chauvistré, Andi Niessner, Livia Vogt, Heike Wasem, Markus Krämer
- Format: Super 16, Colour, 35 mm Blow-up,
- Audio: Dolby-Stereo