The critically acclaimed supernatural thriller Thelma has been nominated to 12 Amanda awards, the Norwegian Oscar. That happened in spite of the director’s threat to boycott the award show.
Last year, Joachim Trier’s supernatural Thelma became one of the most applauded Norwegian genre movies in recent times. The film was part of the official selection at the Toronto International Film Festival and was selected as the Norwegian entry for the Best Foreign Language Film at the 90th Academy Awards (the Oscars), although it was not nominated. The titular character Thelma, a student with a religious background, moves to Oslo where she falls in love with another girl, and soon discovers that her feelings trigger inexplicable powers.
On Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 93% based on 125 reviews, with a weighted average rating of 7.3 out of 10. The website’s critical consensus reads, “Thelma plays with genre tropes in unexpected ways, delivering a thoughtfully twisty supernatural thriller with a lingering impact.” On Metacritic, the film has a weighted average score of 74 out of 100, based on 31 critics, indicating “generally favorable reviews”.
Thelma was this week nominated for 12 Amanda awards, the Norwegian Oscar / BAFTA. That is a new record; The King’s Choice previously set an all-time record with its 12 nominations in 11 categories in 2017. Thelma breaks that record by being nominated in 12 categories; best theatrical film, direction, male and female actors, female supporting role, script, cinematography, production design, visual effects, music, editing and sound design.
This happened in spite of – or maybe because of – the director’s threats last year to boycott the award show, because it, in his opinion, favoured movies that was designed to have “commercial appeal”. -In an extreme situation, a rule about having commercial appeal could mean that a film that wins awards in Cannes or at the Oscars could be disqualified from winning the Amanda because they don’t appeal to mass audiences, Thelma‘s producer Thomas Robsahm said in a press release. He was supporten by eight other producers who signed an open letter where they claimed the award’s legitimacy was undermined if the mass appeal rule was upheld. The boycott was abandoned after three days when a grand jury was created, without specific guidelines on how to judge movies.
Only two other genre films is nominated this year; the moody Valley of Shadows (Best cinematography) and The Twigson Expedition (Best children’s movie), a children’s movie about a little boy and his talking stick figure.
The Amanda winners and awards will be presented on August 18th in Haugesund, Norway at The Norwegian Film Festival.