3 March 2008
Harvesting the Wasteland follows the complicated relationship between two women. One of them finds happiness in tradition, while the other finds hers in breaking with it. Choosing one's own freedom rather than catering to the expectations of family and the outside world is a familiar problem for many. Harvesting the Wasteland focuses on the role of women from small villages and the problems that can arise when generations live too closely together. Several regional medical officers have reported that a main source of illness in the villages is precisely the result of the living arrangements between the generations on the farms. Differences, especially between women who have traditionally had much of the indoor work, have created relationships that have not been easy to live with. The saying, "speech is silver, but silence is golden," has deep roots. The film can also be read as an Ibsenian drama with its strong female figures and universal theme. The different members of the Lykken family have very different stories, which are told in dramatically hushed tones. This is the debut film for both directors. They give us insight into a story that is difficult to tell, and as a film they have invested nearly four years in its making. Self-actualization is not a theme that is entirely accepted outside the bigger cities, and the directors hope that the film can contribute to discussion and an extended acknowledgement of these situations. The film is beautifully photographed and poetic in its imagery.
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