What We Lose (2017)

Director: Jakob Valdemar Mørk

Official Selection 2017

What We Lose (2017)

Vagn, an old school, conservative primary school teacher who lives a simple, safe and structured everyday life is forced to deal with the insecurities of life, when he is faced with challenges both in his professional and personal life.

Director: Jakob Valdemar Mørk

Denmark

Director's Biography

Coming from a background in photography, Jakob usually works from the inside out and that has resulted in a lot of personal and moving stories, both in documentaries and fiction.

He has directed them all, and the movies are usually deep personal stories about his family or childhood memories. That also being the case here, this story is his most personal and important project to date. Jakob loves to tell stories that are grounded and rooted in reality, showing us a world filled with characters we all can relate to some or another. Therefore he is a very story oriented and socially intelligent director, who in order to get the best possible performance spends a lot of time with the actors in order to get the most and best possible emotions on the screen.

But because of his photographic background he is almost manic about the visual style of the movie as well, and therefore he is always having a very close relationship with the DOP of his projects, which always ends out in a visually beautiful and strong result.

Director's Comments

Control is something we are all striving to obtain. It is in many ways the cornerstone of our own self-definition. It can be chased in both small and big sizes and both personally and professionally. Some people are chasing this control more than others, but common for everybody is that we always try to prevent the ultimate loss, to lose control of yourself.

This is a personal story to me, in several ways. It is first of all based on events I have encountered with my old primary school teacher, who was one of the persons to have control as a centre priority in his life, and who paradoxically at the same time was completely unable to control himself when it came to dealing with obstacles getting in the way of his ideologies. My own story also includes the story about a boy who has experienced being incapable of controlling his own temper. Throughout primary school I was struggling with the same problem as my old teacher. I would get into fights and arguments when somebody or something got in the way of my “ideologies”. When this happened I would get so furious that I would end up with no memories of what had happened during “an outrage”. To overcome this lack of control has throughout my life been one of my biggest personal challenges and something that has required a lot for work and looking into myself.

This topic of control and losing it is generally something that concern most people whether its primary or secondary. To lose control in the metaphor of losing someone close to you to an incurable illness is something that everybody have or eventually will try and something that forces us to accept that we are not bigger than we are and that sometimes control is not always obtainable. Another generally relatable aspect of the story is the character of Vagn who in many ways is an archetype that many people have come across and had to deal with at some point. I will tell the story by changing from my own perspective to my old teacher Vagn's perspective, in order to try reflecting on what has been he’s motivations to act as he did.

Judging other people is easy, but to go beyond this and reflect upon their reasons and personal battles is something that is very difficult to do but also very important to try to do, if you want to understand people and your surroundings.

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