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RONJA, THE ROBBER'S DAUGHTER

Sweden, 1984 (MIFF 1985)

Director: Tage Danielsson

One of the delights of this year's Berlin Festival and winner of a special award for imagination, Ronja, The Robber's Daughter is fun.

Written by noted children's author Astrid Lindgren and directed by veteran Tage Danielsson, the film tells its story with a tongue-in cheek enthusiasm. On the night that Ronja is born, a fierce thunderstorm was raging over the mountains, a storm so wild that all the goblinfolk in Mattis' forest crept in terror, back into their holes. Only the fierce harpies, who preferred stormy weather to any other, flew outside, shrieking and hooting around the robber's stronghold. Ronja's life got off to a grand start, for that very night - a giant bolt of lightning struck the fortress and cleft it down the middle. But Mattis paid no heed, he was witless with joy. His robbers were happy for him, Mattis' line would live on, but Borka's line would be finished and done for.

Borka! The arch enemy. Just as Borka's father and grandfather had been arch enemies of Mattis' father and grandfather - since time immemorial the Borkas and the Matts had been at loggerheads. And on that same wild stormy night, Borka had a son - Birk.

As Ronja grew up she learnt to dance, jump and yell with the robbers and grew to feel truly at home in Mattis' world. Whether it was climbing steep cliffs, jumping over waterfalls, or running from angry dwarfs and wild harpies, Ronja defied them all. Mattis had taught her the art of living fearlessly in the forest. Then one day, Ronja meets Birk, and the adventure begins. . .

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