FIPRESCI, the International Federation of Film Critics
”The FIPRESCI prize for best debut film in the Orrizzoni and Settimana internazionale della critica goes to The Reunion (Återträffen) directed by Anna Odell, for the intelligent and engaging way which Återträffen blurs the boundaries between fiction and documentary and speaks about marginalization, bullying and the complicated nature of group dynamics.”
FEDEORA, the Federation of Film Critics of Europe and the Mediterranean
Anna Odell recieves FEDEORA’s special mention: “… for complete author’s work in the film The Reunion”
“In a similar vein, the festival also hosted The Reunion by Anna Odell, a powerful piece of work in which, annoyed at being left out of her 20-year school reunion, the Swedish director films her own fictional version of events. This plays out like a shorter and more polished version of Festen, in which Odell, playing herself, confronts fictional classmates with accusations of bullying. Odell then meets her real classmates to record their reactions, using actors to reconstruct these encounters for the second half of the film. It sounds narcissistic, but The Reunion is actually a rather brave and quite timely film about human behaviour. Most of those confronted say simply: “We were just kids being kids.” But for Odell, that’s not good enough.”
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Dazed & Confused Digital
“Another experimental documentary was Anna Odell’s The Reunion. Odell’s debut feature film tears through conventions as she confronts the demons of her school years. Upon discovering she wasn’t invited to her school year’s 20-year reunion, Odell filmed a reconstruction of the reunion, in which she read out the speech she had originally intended to deliver. With the Dogme style and ceremony of Vinterberg’s Festen, chaos unfolds. The second act follows her contacting her former classmates and inviting them to watch the film. Unsurprisingly they were camera-shy and cautious, so in yet another layer of fictionalising reality, she staged re-enactments of these meetings.”