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Scheme Birds Image

Scheme Birds

Panorama | Insights

Gemma’s idealism isn’t the kind you’d expect. She loves Motherwell, Scotland, decimated skyline and all; she doesn’t expect to leave. "It’s a non-snobby place to stay." Her adolescence is the stuff of cloudy romance: flares and bongs and fistfights, a boyfriend and no parents, a grandfather who owns a boxing gym, friends to write ACAB on walls with ("They are, aren’t they?"). Captured from the outside by Swedish filmmakers Ellen Fiske and Ellinor Hallin and led by its subject’s curious, direct voiceover, at its best Scheme Birds approximates the kind of focused, tender portrait an older Gemma would want to keep of herself.

Filmed over four years, as Gemma becomes increasingly responsible for her own life, the project apparently came about while Fiske and Hallin were filming another idea in Scotland and ran into the 16-year-old. "This sounds so boring, this documentary you’re making," she said. "You should make a documentary about me instead." And so they did; the results are "intimate and wrenchingly affecting." - Wendy Ide, Screen

Best Documentary, Tribeca 19


Country of Origin: Scotland/Sweden
Year: 2019
Running Time: 87 mins
Format: DCP
Language:In English with English subtitles
Related Links: Official Website | Review | Q&A
Executive Producer: Mark Thomas, Lizzie Francke
Producer: Ruth Reid, Mario Adamson
Screenwriter: Ellen Fiske, Ellinor Hallin
Cinematographer: Ellinor Hallin
Editor: Hanna Lejonqvist
Music: Charlie Jefferson, Loki, Jim Sutherland, Christoffer Meier
Production Company: Sisyfos Film Production AB, GID Films
Print Source: Syndicado

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