1 user 6 critic

The Optimists (2013)

Optimistene (original title)
A documentary about an unusual volleyball team in Hamar, Norway, with ladies aged from 66 to 98. Now they are up for their first match, after 30 years of training.


Gunhild Magnor


Gunhild Magnor
2 wins. See more awards »


Add Image Add an image

Do you have any images for this title?



Credited cast:
Gerd Bergersen Gerd Bergersen ... Herself
Lillemor Berthelsen Lillemor Berthelsen ... Herself
Mary Holst Bremstad Mary Holst Bremstad ... Herself
Aase-Marit Børke Aase-Marit Børke ... Herself
Eldbjørg Grøttum Eldbjørg Grøttum ... Herself
Anne-Grethe Westhagen Magnor Anne-Grethe Westhagen Magnor ... Herself
Birgit Myklebust Birgit Myklebust ... Herself
Irma Nordseth Irma Nordseth ... Herself
Ulla Olssøn Ulla Olssøn ... Herself
Turid Otervik Turid Otervik ... Herself
Solveig Sætersdal Solveig Sætersdal ... Herself
Marit Tenmann Marit Tenmann ... Herself
Hedvig Thune-Ellefsen Hedvig Thune-Ellefsen
Goro Wergeland Goro Wergeland ... Herself
Anni Øverland Anni Øverland


A documentary about a volleyball team with ladies aged from 66 to 98, which after 30 years of training are about to have their first match, against a veteran men's team from Sweden. The film follows the ladies on and off the course, while preparing for the big match, with lots of laughter and companionship. Written by OJT

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis



Official Sites:

Official Facebook | Official site


Sweden | Norway


Swedish | Norwegian

Release Date:

September 2013 (Norway) See more »

Also Known As:

The Optimists See more »


Box Office


NOK4,720,000 (estimated)

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Skofteland Film See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs



See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


Goro Wergeland is the oldest of the ladies playing on the team, aged 98. the youngest is 66 years old. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

This FAQ is empty. Add the first question.

User Reviews

Full of life and optimism in forced drama
5 December 2013 | by OJTSee all my reviews

In "The optimists" we meet 15 old ladies in the range from 66 to 98 from the Norwegian town of Hamar. They gather for diverse gymnastics and sporty events like bicycling, skiing and volleyball. they have been training volleyball for 30 years, but haven't really had to learn the rules before now, when they are to play their first match ever, against Swedish male pensioners in Sollentuna.

This film is made and photographed by the daughter of one of these pensioners, and the film is a heart-warm and quite funny feel good film about pensioners keeping their friendship, more than about volleyball. As a portrait of how these pensioners get along and train to keep in good health this is very good. What I don't like, is that the match and the rehearsals up to the trip to Sweeden feels too forced. It's too obvious that the film maker has both had the idea of the match, the trip and getting National coaches to train them before the match. Also the big event in Sollentuna is way too forced for my taste. If you are able to see through that, you'll have a nice time in front of the screen.

Getting to know these ladies in their autumn of life is still quite a blessing. The most interesting thing is that we get to know several of them, and what they do and struggle with in every day situations. Illness, cancer and back problems are all present. Great also is the laughter and to see how childishly young they are in spite of their age.

In some ways this resembles and is in the same genre as "Heftig og begeistret" ("Cool and crazy") about the old mans choir from Berlevåg which was an enormous success back in 2001. I'm sorry to say this though isn't close to this in filming quality, but it has the same feel good vibration. This also scores in the focus on their everyday life, which is more focused here than in the movie about the mens choir. The film is best suited for elders and those working with them, but can also be a charming watch for others. The film won the audience award called "Gledessprederen" at the Norwegain International Film Festival in Haugesund in August 2013, just after the teams oldest, Goro, died.

4 of 4 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you? | Report this
Review this title | See one user review »

Contribute to This Page

Stream Trending TV Series With Prime Video

Explore popular and recently added TV series available to stream now with Prime Video.

Start your free trial

Recently Viewed