For You Naked (För Dig Naken) is Sara Broos highly acclaimed debut feature - also a big audience success in the theatres in Sweden. A courageous and very intimate love story between two strangers who meet on Internet, Lars Lerin, of Scandinavias most wellknown artists and Manoel Marques (Junior), a Brazilian dancer, from two entire different worlds. They can´t speak the same language. They are both desperate to find true love. Can you make a rational decision to fall in love with someone? Can you order happiness? A story about the courage it takes to drop your defences and stand naked and vulnerable in front of the other. And how hard it can be to fall in love again after years of alcoholism, drug abuse and a broken heart. Brutally honest about doubts and fear. We closely follow their struggle for a happy existence and their search for a life where someone loves you - regardless of how vastly difficult it can be to love yourself.
The Director, Sara Broos, is Lars Lerin’s god daughter.
The film received a Dragon Award for best Swedish documentary at the 2012 Gothenburg International Film Festival with the motivation;
Dragon Award Best Swedish Documentary 2012
A generous and loving depiction of a strong meeting between emotions and mind. The director invites us into a film about tolerance and the importance of keeping one's heart open, and about daring to meet the unknown. With beautiful and poetic images we follow the main characters close-up through successes and setbacks.
Jury: Sofi Lagergren, trustee at Stockholm's Film Academy, Tova Mozard, artist and Nima Sarvestani, documentary filmmaker.
Special Jury Mention - Mix Copenhagen
Special Jury Mention - SIde by Side Int Film festival (Russia)
Nordic Docs 2013 Best Feature Length Documentary
I am hiding behind jackets and coats in the hallway, peering in to the kitchen. It is late at night in the early 80’s, dense pine forest in the outskirts of Hagfors, a small town in the County of Värmland in Sweden. I am seven years old. A woman is lying on the kitchen floor with her blouse unbuttoned and her lipstick smeared. I can just about make out her naked breast beneath the blouse. It is Monica Zetterlund, a legendary Swedish jazz singer. A man is bent over her. He is skinny and very nervous with blonde hair. It’s Lars. He strokes her hair and she reaches out towards him, wanting him to kiss her. He explains that he is not “that way inclined”, but she refuses his answer. She says she worships him and his wonderful paintings. Nobody can catch the light in a painting the way he does it. She is drunk. I think she is incredibly beautiful with blonde curls and intensity in her eyes. Lars knows I’m hiding in the hallway. He is the only one who sees me.
The evening ends with a trip in an ambulance to Hagfors hospital for Monica. She tripped and fell down the stairs, caught and ripped her ear in the fall.
Lars is lying on the sofa in our living room. He is Michael Jackson, he has his face cello taped and his eyes painted with black acrylic paint. He says he is longing for love, that he can identify himself with Michael and his longing to become something else. He grew up outside a small town in Värmland in Sweden. His father wanted him to be “like everybody else”. He tries on his mother’s lipstick in front of the mirror. At twelve years of age he is in love with a boy in his class at school.
My mother pretends to be Catrin Jacobs, a Swedish talkshow host from the 80’s. They are role playing. Every week they have a new film. My dad is behind the camera. Sometimes I take part too.
Lars is soon to meet his life’s first true love, an artist from The Lofoten Islands in Norway. They stay together for thirteen years. A relationship tainted with alcohol delirium, fights and arguments that often result in furniture being thrown out on the street and sleepless nights. We write letters to each other during this time and whenever we meet he is literally shaking from anxiety, alcohol and tablets. When the relationship ends he turns up in my parent’s kitchen, collapses on the floor and says he wants to die. Yngve has left him. He goes to rehab and returns, fresh faced, pale and exhausted but determined to start a new life. He puts personal ads in the paper. Thinks it would be good to find a secure man, a staunch farmer with no artistic ambitions, someone who works the land and cooks healthy food. His ads get an enormous response and he introduces us to his potential lovers, a mechanic from up north, a body builder from Costa Rica who never left home, an Indian dentist, and so on. The quest keeps him out of trouble and off alcohol and it almost becomes a new addiction.
Lars writes in his diary:
The past is choking me, the here and now is torture and I do not even dare to think about the future. Cyberspace is cold and empty, many tainted hopes, thousands of burnt souls are aimlessly wandering around, helpless and in eternal despair. Love thirsty lovers beaten with manipulation.
After many years of searching for the right lover he finally makes contact with a Brazilian dancer, Manoel, or Junior as they call him, since he is the last in line of ten siblings. They Skype each other and Lars learns to say a few words in Portuguese. Mostly they sit in front of the camera, just looking at each other, or show their rooms or the view from the house.
There is something about Manoel that Lars is drawn to and out of the blue they decide that he is going to come to Sweden for a few weeks. I join Lars when he goes to the airport to pick him up and bring my camera to film their first meeting, that hopefully will become a big love story. I follow them closely over a period of three years. It turns in to a stormy relationship that starts with awkward efforts to understand each other, evolving in to a passionate liaison of love, break-ups and doubt.
I become a third part in their relationship, present from the first moment. Someone they can turn to when they misunderstand each other. Shortly before Junior is about to return to Brazil he declares his love for Lars whilst in a pizza restaurant. He speaks in Portuguese, says he has found his soul mate and wants to live with Lars for the rest of his life, even after death. Lars doesn’t understand a word. He just comments on the warmth in Junior’s eyes and says he feels like a hyena who doesn’t know what he wants. It’s only when they both view the film afterwards, once it has been edited and translated, that they understand what they had both been saying to each other. It almost became a way of reconstructing their first meeting.
Everything started without words, love grew without a language. But perhaps that doesn’t matter. Maybe language just becomes a barrier sometimes, a way of trying to portray oneself in a certain light.
The first few weeks were difficult. Junior walked around wearing dark sunglasses, shutting himself off. Lars was frustrated over the lack of communication. My presence was of course also daunting. Lars was seeing a therapist, who condemned their meeting and thought Lars wanted to find short cuts in order to receive affirmations and love. Said it was manipulative and that it was all according to Lars and on his terms and conditions.
The greatest challenge in filming is to be ruthless in a humble way, to dare to come close, not only in what you are trying to portray but also close to yourself. Lars is open and vulnerable. There is now boundary between life and art. His narrative in the film, and his diaries of letters, tell a story of abuse of alcohol and pills. I can relate to that after my eating disorder in my teens. It’s addiction in different ways. But something is similar, the need to fill the empty void with something. Of getting high on not eating, or taking pills or drinking a litre of whiskey to knock yourself unconscious. To have no emotion is the most scary feeling.
“Are you in love Lars, do you know if you are in love”, my father asks in the film. “No, I don’t know what love is”.
PREMIERE GOTHENBURG INT FILM FESTIVAL 2012
(DRAGON AWARD BEST SWEDISH DOCUMENTARY)
KARLOVY VARY 2012 (IN COMPETITION BEST DOCUMENTARY)
IDFA AMSTERDAM - 2012 BEST OF FESTS
TEMPO DOCUMENTARY FILM FESTIVAL STOCKHOLM 2013
DOK LEIPZIG - DOCS FOR SALE 2013
MIX BRASIL SAO PAOLO & RIO 2013
MIX COPENHAGEN (SPECIAL JURY MENTION) 2013
CINECITY INT FILM FESTIVAL BRIGHTON 2013
NORDISCHE FILMTAGE LÜBECK (IN COMPETITION) 2012
DOC LOUNGE HELSINKI 2013
DOC POINT HELSINKI 2013
PLANET DOC WARZAW 2013
DOCS&SHORTS REYKJAVIK 2013
SIDE BY SIDE INT FILM FESTIVAL ST PETERSBURG 2013
(SPECIAL JURY MENTION)
TOMSK SIBERIA 2013
NORDIC DOCS - NORWAY 2013 (BEST NORDIC DOCUMENTARY)
SWEDENS OFFICIAL CONTRIBUTION EUROPEAN UNION FILM FESTIVAL
BROADCAST SWEDISH TELEVISION 6,7,8,9 DEC, 20 JUNE 2012
SWEDEN: THEATRICAL PREMIERE 2 APRIL 2012
AMERICAN DOCUMENTARY FILM FESTIVAL PALM SPRINGS 2016
För Dig Naken
(For You Nake)
Documentary 58/74 min (2012)
An intimate and sensitively filmed love story between one of Scandinavia’s most highly regarded modern painters and a young Brazilian dancer. Two men with a dark past desperately searching for true love. They meet on Skype and can’t communicate, yet they decide to meet and try to fall in love. This is the beginning of an unpredictable and humorous love story with dark undertones of domination and control. We closely follow their search for a life where someone loves you – regardless of how vastly difficult it can be to love one self.
För dig naken är en hudlös och nära skildring av konstnären Lars Lerin och hans sökande efter kärlek. Om svårigheten att träffa någon och att verkligen bli kär igen efter brustet hjärta och många år av alkoholmissbruk. Om mängder av kontaktannonser och blinddates som slutligen sammanförde honom med Manoel Marques (Junior) från Brasilien. Lars Lerin är en av Skandinaviens mest framstående konstnärer.
Regissören Sara Broos är hans guddotter och följer nära deras kärlekshistoria från det första trevande mötet på Arlanda genom tvivel och uppbrott, passion och värme. En humoristisk och varm film med en mörk underton, om att våga möta en främling och stå naken inför den andre med alla sina fel och brister.
"A masterful film about love"
Johan Croneman, Dagens Nyheter
“A must-see film, wonderful!”
Malou von Sivers, TV4
“A physical, sensuous and strong belief
in the power of love”
Swedish radio P1
“A humorous and naked portrait”
“The nakedness shown in this film is the basic condition of human existence”