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Forest of the Dancing Spirits (2013)

De dansande andarnas skog (original title)
Not Rated | | Documentary | 29 November 2013 (Sweden)
"In the beginning, women lived apart, unaware of the existence of men. Until one day, when the first woman, Toli, who was brave and adventurous traveled deep into the forest. Toli ... See full summary »


Linda Västrik


Linda Västrik
1 win & 3 nominations. See more awards »


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"In the beginning, women lived apart, unaware of the existence of men. Until one day, when the first woman, Toli, who was brave and adventurous traveled deep into the forest. Toli discovered solitary creatures with big muscles who knew how to climb trees and harvest wild honey. When Toli tasted their honey, she thought they should all live together...." That is how one of the creation stories of the Akka people from the tropical rainforest of the Congo Basin goes. Akaya, Kengole, Dibota and their friends and family are hunters-gatherers (and also great story-tellers) who guide us through their world. They explain their origins, myths, and the very spiritual meaning of life. The film follows their unique community life as it unfolds over many years. We experience the practice of their spirituality in the most difficult situations. Their religion is playful and highly creative in dealing with deeply serious matters of life and death, and may be the oldest human religion practiced on ... Written by Linda Västrik

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Did You Know?


Linda Västrik's first feature documentary filmed on film. The idea of making it took shape after she had heard musical recordings from the Mbuti in Ituri Congo Zaire from 1942. Forest of the Dancing Spirits was shot inside the tropical rain forest of the Congo Basin and has the worlds longest shooting times on location with participants living in such remote locations. The film was made right after the civil war in Congo-Brazzaville and is the first extended document produced from inside of this country at this time. See more »

User Reviews

A remarkable film!
21 March 2013 | by thf-3See all my reviews

The film avoids putting a grid of values over the depiction of the lives of these people living in the deep forests of Congo. Resulting in me seeing, that we have much more in common, than what separates us. Linda Västrik manages to get extremely close to these people and since she is very empathetic, straight and bold, she does not use their lives, molding it into a box of predetermined dramaturgy, but rather unfolds the story of their lives. At this time. I've never seen anything like this and I'm very grateful to Västrik and her team for going through all the hardship of making this film, following an old piece of music! There is hope.

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Swedish | French | Lingala | Kudmali

Release Date:

29 November 2013 (Sweden) See more »

Also Known As:

Forest of the Dancing Spirits See more »

Filming Locations:

Brazzaville, Republic Of Congo


Box Office


CAD1,563,204 (estimated)
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Dolby SR



Aspect Ratio:

16:9 HD
See full technical specs »

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