Songs of Earth

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Songs of Earth offers many entry points. One of them is Theodor Kittelsen's depiction of the Ash Lad gazing towards the light from Soria Moria Castle. In Margreth Olin's film, the wanderer is her father, 84-year-old Jørgen Mykløen, standing in Oldedalen and gazing towards the Jostedalsbreen glacier.

The camera follows the gaze of the small figure of the man over the landscape he is looking at: Jostedalsbreen and the mountains surrounding Oldedalen in Nordfjord. The placement of the father as a small figure recurs in many of the film's nature shots, such as when he provides perspective to a waterfall, on a mountain peak, and the drone pans to a new Ash Lad-like shot with Oldevatnet in the background. The drone and helicopter shots are well complemented by the music of composer Rebekka Karijord, performed by the London Contemporary Orchestra under Hugh Brunt.

Olin also employs other visual techniques besides overwhelming nature shots. The first occurs in the film's prologue, where we meet the father on the ice on Oldevatnet in winter. These contrast with the many panoramic shots. We follow in the footsteps of father Jørgen as he, in spring, summer, fall, and winter, traverses the mountainous landscape around Oldevatnet, much like little Margreth did in her childhood. The panoramas of the surroundings and the walks with Jørgen are complemented by inset images of wildlife – a herd of elk majestically trotting in winter, and close-ups of a lynx or a majestic eagle in flight, to insect photography on a microscopic level.


Margreth Olin (b. 1970) has film and media education from the universities in Bergen and Oslo and Volda University College. Her fiction films and award-winning documentaries stand out with precise and poetic cinematic language, along with a strong commitment to society's most vulnerable. Olin runs her own production company, Speranza Film. She won the Arne Skouen Honorary Award in 2013.


2020 Self Portrait
2017 Childhood
2009 The Angel
2004 Raw Youth
2002 My Body

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