The Nordic & Baltic Oscar Contenders series at Scandinavia House returns this season with select in-house and virtual screenings of films chosen by the Nordic & Baltic countries to compete for the Oscar nomination for the Best International Feature Film. On December 11 at Scandinavia House, see the film The Pit /Bedre (dir. Dace Pūce; Latvia/Finland, 2020), Latvia’s official nomination for the 94th Academy Awards. A pre-recorded film talk with Dace Pūce will follow the screening.
Ten-year-old Markus struggles to adapt to a new life with his grandmother in a small rural village, particularly after Emīlija, a neighbor’s daughter, makes unkind remarks about his father. In response, Markus decides to teach her a cruel lesson — but when his act is discovered, it has severe consequences which resonate throughout the village, deepening Markus’ hatred of the locals even further. The only person he can relate to is an older man living in the nearby woods, with whom he develops a mutual inspiration and trust to keep each others’ secrets. But only with an accidental turn of events, and a plot for revenge, will Markus’s reputation with the villagers change. (107 min. In Latvian with English subtitles)
Tickets to this event must be purchased in advance online at the link above; film screenings will take place in Victor Borge Hall. All attendees are required to present proof of vaccination upon arrival in compliance with New York State government; read more here. Attendees are required to follow all Scandinavia House safety protocols, including wearing masks during the program and observing social distancing rules in signage. Please read our full safety protocols here.
About the Director
Dace Pūce is a Latvian filmmaker residing in Riga, Latvia. She holds a degree in music and began her career as a singer, dancer, and actor. Dace continued her studies at CS Martin College for Art Directing and the Latvian Academy of Arts. She has two MA degrees from the Latvian Academy of Music and Latvian Culture Academy in film direction and production, has attended directing courses at Brighton Film School (UK) and New York Film Academy (USA), and has a certificate in the Meisner acting technique approach from True Acting Institute (USA).
In 2003, Dace established Marana Productions and directed and produced many music videos, TV commercials, concerts and events. She has produced and directed several short films and documentaries and won awards and accolades for her music videos and short films.Her first feature film, The Pit (2020) has achieved success in festivals around the world, and won the Grand Prix awards – Tallinn Black Night Works in Progress (Estonia, 2019), Nordic Film Days Lübeck (Germany, 2020) and Baltic Debut Film Festival (Russia, 2021). She was awarded the Best First Time Director in European Cinematography award for her second Latvia-India co-produced feature film Manny (2020).