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Pelle the Conqueror

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Original title
Pelle erobreren aka
  • Pelle the Conqueror
Running time
138 min.
Denmark Denmark
Bille August. Novel: Martin Andersen Naxo
Stefan Nilsson
Jörgen Persson
Co-production Denmark-Sweden;
Per Holst Filmproduktion, Svensk Filmindustri (SF), Odyssey Entertainment
Drama | Social Drama. 1900s. Poverty. Immigration
At the end of the 19th century, a boat filled with emigrants from Sweden arrives at the Danish island of Bornholm. Among them are Lasse Karlsson and his son Pelle who have moved to Denmark to find work after the death of Pelle's mother. They find employment at a large farm, but find themselves treated as the lowest form of life. After being humiliated by the farm’s young trainee manager, Pelle is disappointed when Lasse does not stand up for him. Pelle admires Eric, an older immigrant who is not cowed by the farm manager and who dreams of going to America. He watches as an affair develops between Anna, an immigrant worker, and Nils, son of a local dignitary, and sees the affair’s tragic outcome. Pelle’s friend Rud fails his school exams, then runs away. Through Pelle, Mrs. Olsen, whose sailor husband is lost at sea, becomes interested in Lasse. Pelle observes the drinking of Mrs. Kongstrup, wife of the farm’s owner, and the philandering of her husband. He sees Mrs. Kongstrup’s niece, the lovely Sine, arrive and witnesses the disastrous consequences of her visit.
1989: BAFTA Awards: Nominated for Best Film not in the English Language
1988: Oscar: Best Foreign Language Picture
1988: Golden Globes: Best Foreign Language Film
1988: Cannes Film Festival: Palme d´Or (Golden Palm)
1988: European Film Awards: Best Actor (Max von Sydow)
1988: New York Film Critics Circle: Nominated for Best Cinematography
1988: César Awards: Nominated for Best European Movie
1987: Guldbagge Awards (Sweden): Best Film and Actor (Max von Sydow)
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