Selvportrett (Self Portrait)

Wednesday, May 17, 2023 7:00pm
Norway 2020
Margreth Olin, Katja Hogset, Espen Wallin
77 min


Vancouver Premiere

Self Portrait is the kind of movie that hits you hard from the beginning and stays with you … A perfect example of real-life cinema, boasting both authenticity and aesthetic vision. Relevant, brave, and emotional, it is a powerful documentary about illness and art, where photography can change our vision of life.”

Jihane Bougrine, FIPRESCI

Lene Marie Fossen’s self portraits will break your heart. Beautifully composed and artfully presented, they are nevertheless photographs of a young woman in the throes of a long and drawn-out process of self-starvation. An overly anxious child, Lene Marie stopped eating at the age of ten; she was diagnosed with anorexia soon after and hospitalized off and on for years. Now 28, Lene Marie has never gone through puberty. Her pain is ever-present, but she has discovered a passion (and a great talent) for photography. When her work is lauded by Norway’s best-known photographer—resulting in an exhibition at a preeminent photography festival—an international breakthrough seems imminent. But a car accident leaves her unable to use her camera, and Lene Marie falls into a crushing depression. In October 2019, at only 33, Lene Marie passed away. She watched the finished film before she died and, together with her parents, wished for it to be released into the world.

In Norwegian with English subtitles

“As a window into the grip of anorexia—with all its shame, dependency, and cruel, consuming finality—this is powerful stuff.”
Wendy Ide, Screen International

Post-screening discussion with Dr. Seena Grewal, a child and adolescent psychiatrist and the senior psychiatric director of the Provincial Eating Disorder program at BC Children’s Hospital.

Dr. Grewal’s clinical work has focused on eating disorders in children and adolescents as well as acute care/​crisis interventions for youth.

Moderated by Dr. Harry Karlinsky