Crossing Boundaries: Anna Sofie Hartmann Discusses "Giraffe"

  • MUBI
There are no giraffes in Scandinavia. Right? Wrong. Anna Sofie Hartman opens her second feature with two of the animals looking directly into the camera, towering above a forest of evergreen firs. Dara (Lisa Loven Kongsli) is photographer and ethnologist researching the transformation of the landscape before it is carved up by a large construction project. A major tunnel will be built to connect Denmark and Germany, and before that happens Dara scours the topography, documenting its memories contained in objects, letters, diary entries. One couple threatened with expropriation fill their house with small collections. In the second shot of the film they sit below a small framed image of a giraffe during an interview with Dara. It presides over conversations about their imminent geographical and emotional upheaval. Giraffes never appear again, not explicitly at least. Yet, the film is punctuated by unexpected encounters only a truly globalized world could produce.
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