6 user 4 critic

Laila (1929)

Not Rated | | Drama, Romance | 12 October 1929 (Norway)
A spirited Norwegian Lass is torn between two suitors and two cultures.


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Cast overview:
... Laila
Tryggve Larssen ... Jåmpa
Harald Schwenzen ... Anders
Peter Malberg ... Aslag Laagje
Cally Monrad ... Mor Laagje, hans kone
Henry Gleditsch ... Mellet
Finn Bernhoft ... C.O. Lind, handlesmann
Lilly Larson-Lund ... Hans hustru
Ibe Brekke ... Magga, tjenestepike hos Lind
Aslag Aslagsen Sara ... Lasse, en tjenestegutt
Rasmus Christiansen ... Bror til C.O. Lind
Alice O'Fredericks ... Inger
Mattis Morotaja ... Melet som liten gutt


A spirited Norwegian Lass is torn between two suitors and two cultures.

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Romance


Not Rated | See all certifications »



Release Date:

12 October 1929 (Norway)  »

Also Known As:

Laila - Die Tochter des Nordens  »

Company Credits

Production Co:

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?


Screenplay was adapted from a popular 1881 novel by Jens Andreas Friis. J.A. Friis was the first professor at a Norwegian university to hold a chair in Sami culture. He is widely recognized as the founder of the Sami language studies. See more »


Laila: Bad Jåmpa, dearest Jåmpa!
See more »


Version of Make Way for Lila (1958) See more »

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User Reviews

Yes it's too long, but it's a delight to watch
29 November 2017 | by See all my reviews

You'll have to forgive Laila for its slow pace, which is a common enough problem for films of this era. Director George Schnéevoigt tends to draw scenes out in what seem like unnecessary ways, including holding the camera on his actors' faces for too many seconds as they emote, and the film should have been shorter than its 2 hour and 45 minute run time. However, if you can cope with that, this film has a lot of visual treats that make it well worth watching, and is fairly unique besides.

Filmed in the Finnmark region of the extreme northeast part of Norway, 'Laila' deals with the cultural differences between the Lapps, the nomadic indigenous people who were primarily reindeer herders, and the Norwegians, who were primarily settlers and traders. At the center of the story is Laila (Mona Mårtenson), a young woman who was born Norwegian, but through a couple of tragic accidents, ends up being raised by Lapps. As she grows up, she's promised to her Lapp step-brother (Henry Gleditsch), but finds herself falling for a Norwegian (Harald Schwenzen) who turns out to be her cousin. Mårtenson is athletic and beautiful, and the two men in this love triangle are both rather dashing, which adds to the natural scenic beauty of their surroundings.

While the story itself gets a little melodramatic at times, the best part of the film is how it transports us to this remote part of the world. We see packs of wolves bounding through deep snow, and large herds of majestic reindeer. We see reindeer being tamed, and pulling individual sleds and people on skis. The traditional apparel is fantastic – the hats, big furs, and the way babies were thoroughly wrapped up. The visual appearance of the older Lapp men (played by Tryggve Larssen and Peter Malberg) is striking, with their strong eyebrows and features. In one scene, a Lapp mother gives her two boys a hot bath, then turns them out naked to roll around in the snow. In others, Mårtenson gracefully pilots a canoe. With all of that and the beautiful snowy scenery, it's just a delight to watch.

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