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The Flight of the Eagle
Ingenjör Andrées luftfärd
dir. Jan Troell / Sweden, West Germany, Norway 1982 / 145’
subtitles: Polish and English
retrospective: Jan Troell


Max von Sydow, Sverre Anker Ousdal, Göran Stangertz, Eva von Hanno, Charlotta Larsson, Clément Harari, Cornelis Vreeswijk, Jan-Olof Strandberg, Henric Holmberg, Mimi Pollak, Bruno Balp

Film description

The film tells the true story of a balloon expedition undertaken in 1897 by Salomon August Andrée and his two companions, who wanted to reach the North Pole. In the Swedish collective consciousness this fact became a mythical national tragedy.

Troell's interest in this story was triggered by the novel by Per Olof Sundman entitled The Flight of the Eagle (Ingenjör Andrées luftfärd) he read in 1967. In his adaptation of the novel, Troell based not only on the literary work, but also on precise research on the expedition's history. The film carefully reconstructs its stages until the fatal finale. But for the director, the psychological portrayal of the three daredevils is more important than the events known from the history. The filmmaker is more interested in the expedition's leader as a man of utmost courage, exaggerated ambition and a will as strong as iron, enslaved by his dream of scientific mission, carried out despite deadly dangers not only to his life, but to other members of the expedition as well.

Tadeusz Szczepański

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