The Expedition to the End of the World
PROD Michael Haslund-Christensen
SCR Daniel Dencik, Janus Metz, Michael Haslund-Christensen
CAM Martin Munck, Adam Philip, Torben Forsberg
EDS Per Sandholt, Rebekka Lønqvist
MUS Mads Heldtberg
PROD CO Haslund Film Aps / Film i Väst
Silhouetted by ancient glaciers, a three-masted schooner cuts through the ice-strewn fjords along Greenland’s northeast coast. Aboard the vessel, the scene is decidedly less tranquil. A merry band of biologists, philosophers, geographers and artists (including Daniel Richter and Tal R) are high on pioneer spirit and intoxicated by the prospect of calling on absolutely sublime arctic lands previously unvisited by modern man. With encroaching ice threatening to leave the intrepid sailors stranded in these strange waters, there’s an exhilarating urgency to their quest. Much like our planet, they’re operating on a running clock.
Combining the swashbuckling and cerebral, Daniel Dencik’s stirring documentary lavishes equal attention on the majestic landscapes, the minutiae of arctic exploration and the extreme measures taken by the motley crew to stave off boredom (be it shooting guns, carousing to heavy metal or contemplating a polar bear’s intentions). And while this might have a Herzogian ring to it, be assured that Dencik has crafted a cinematic exploration of human nature guided by his own idiosyncratic sensibilities.
“A sublimely idiosyncratic odyssey. While the scientists unearth fascinating details of a lost world, the artists in the group mull over the cosmic, and existential, implications, lending the voyage a Beckett-like sense of the absurd… But even if the film were silent, its eerie landscapes are so breathtaking, and serenely composed, that we’d still be entranced.”—Brian D. Johnson, Maclean’s