Film Review: The Seer and the Unseen


While to many, the likes of elvers and trolls will be something out of Lord of the Rings or another fantasy book, for generations of Northern Europeans they’ve formed an integral part of their national folklore. The Huldufólk, or hidden people, play a prominent role in the mythology and legend of The Icelandic people. These supernatural creatures live in harmony with the rugged and windswept natural landscape of the more sparsely populated, and one of the most remote, countries on the continent.

Today, whilst most of the old Norse and Gaelic traditions have faded with the onset of development and industrialisation, around half of Icelanders still believe in the existence of elves, in some shape or form. Ragnhildur Jonsdottir is a seemingly normal unassuming grandmother, but she has a very special gift. She’s a seer, a conduit between humans and the Huldufólk. Her struggle to protect their sacred places is documented in The Seer and the Unseen.

The Seer and the Unseen is a thoughtful and playful portrait of a culture where modern economic politics and traditional mythology collide. Sara Dosa’s film is largely observational, following ‘Ragga’ as she works as a consultant to mediate between government, industry and the elves; fighting to protect the beautiful and raw Icelandic topography from development. Environmentalism, activism and mysticism collide in the delightfully offbeat The Seer and the Unseen.

The Seer and the Unseen is released on AppleTV & Altavod in the US on 17 August.

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