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The Emigrants (1971)

Utvandrarna (original title)
In the middle of the 19th century, Kristina and Karl-Oskar live in a small rural village in Smaaland (southern Sweden). They get married and try to make a living on a small spot of land. ... See full summary »

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Nominated for 5 Oscars. Another 7 wins & 5 nominations. See more awards »
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
...
Eddie Axberg ...
Sven-Olof Bern ...
Nils (as Svenolof Bern)
Aina Alfredsson ...
Märta
...
Danjel
Monica Zetterlund ...
Ulrika
Pierre Lindstedt ...
Arvid
Hans Alfredson ...
Jonas Petter
Ulla Smidje ...
Inga-Lena, Danjels hustru
Eva-Lena Zetterlund ...
Elin, Ulrikas dotter
Gustaf Färingborg ...
Prosten Brusander
Åke Fridell ...
Aron på Nybacken
Agneta Prytz ...
Fina-Kajsa
Halvar Björk ...
Anders Månsson, hennes son
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Storyline

In the middle of the 19th century, Kristina and Karl-Oskar live in a small rural village in Smaaland (southern Sweden). They get married and try to make a living on a small spot of land. However, the small size of their land, the infertile soil, and some bad harvests make it tough. One of their children even starves to death. Thus, they decide to emigrate to the U.S. They meet a group of farmers with their families planning the emigration under the leadership of a banned priest. They sell everything and embark for the U.S. The journey on the sailing ship is long and tedious. Some of the emigrants will never reach the New World. Written by Gerhard Windecker <g.wind@mbox300.swipnet.se>

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Taglines:

a new land...a new hope...a new dream

Genres:

Drama | History

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

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Details

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Release Date:

8 March 1971 (Sweden)  »

Also Known As:

The Emigrants  »

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Color:

(Eastmancolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

When filming the scene towards the end, where Karl Oskar walks off to find a better place for his settlement, director Jan Troell forgot to yell, "Cut." Max von Sydow just kept walking and walking, waiting for a "cut", and nobody realized until they took lunch. See more »

Goofs

Black slaves are shown chained to the Lake Erie steamboat leaving Buffalo, New York, circa 1850. Slavery had been abolished in the State of New York since 1827. See more »

Quotes

Kristina: Karl Oskar, I have to tell you something. I'm that way yet again.
Karl Oskar: Oh? It couldn't have been any more untimely and unsuited.
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Connections

Featured in Sneak Previews: The Best Films of the '70s (1979) See more »

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User Reviews

 
"Memorable historic drama..."
10 April 2012 | by (Norway) – See all my reviews

Swedish screenwriter, film editor, cinematographer and director Jan Troell's third feature film which he edited, photographed and wrote with Swedish screenwriter and producer Bengt Forslund, is an adaptation of the novels "The Emigrants" (1949) and "Unto a Good Land" (1952) by Swedish author Vilhelm Moberg (1898-1973) which is the first two parts of his tetralogy, "The Emigrants suite" (1949-1959). It premiered in Sweden, was shot on locations in Denmark, Sweden and USA, is the first part of a two-part film which was succeeded by "The New Land" (1972) and produced by Bengt Forslund. It tells the story about Karl-Oskar Nilsson who lives on a farm in Ljuders socken, Småland, Sweden with his father, his mother and his brother Robert. When Karl-Oskar meets seventeen-year-old Kristina Johansdotter, he falls in love with her and later he marries her. Kristina gives birth to several children and they become a happy family, but as time goes by it gets harder and more challenging to run the farm, much due to the harvest. After reading an ad in a newspaper about free land in North-America, Karl-Oskar begins to consider emigrating from Sweden with his family.

Acutely and engagingly directed by Jan Troell, this period drama, set against the backdrop of Sweden during the 1840s and 1850s, draws an extensive and gripping portrayal of a group of farmers and Christians who emigrate from their homeland, a humane portrayal of a close friendship between two young farmhands and a compassionate portrayal of an evolving relationship between a farmer and is housewife. While notable for its poignant art direction by Swedish production designer P.A. Lundgren (1911-2002), the distinct cinematography by Jan Troell and the fine costume design by Swedish costume designer Ulla-Britt Söderlund (1943-1985), this character-driven and dialog-driven historic epic where the natural surroundings plays an important and symbolic part, examines themes like family relations, interpersonal relations, friendship, poverty, courage and dignity.

This Swedish production which was a big investment in Swedish cinema at the time, depicts several studies of character, has a significant atmosphere which is emphasized by the naturalistic milieu depictions and the subtle score by Swedish composer Erik Nordgren (1913-1992) and is impelled and reinforced by the empathic and involving acting performances by Swedish actors Max von Sydow, Allan Edwall (1924- 1997), Eddie Axberg and Pierre Lindstedt, Swedish actress and singer Monica Zetterlund (1937-2005) and Norwegian actress Liv Ullmann who was nominated for an Academy Award for Best Actress in a leading role at the 45th Academy Awards in 1973, marking her as the first Norwegian actress ever to gain an Academy Award nomination. A cautiously narrated and memorable historic drama which gained, among other awards, the Golden Globe Award for Best Actress Liv Ullmann and Best Foreign Language Film at the 30th Golden Globe Awards in 1973, the NYFCC Award for Best Actress Liv Ullmann at the New York Film Critics Circle Awards in 1973, the Jussi Award for Best Foreign Filmmaker Jan Troell at the Jussi Awards in 1972 and was nominated for five Academy Awards in 1973.


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