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Runtime:
75 min.
Year of Production:
2001
Country:
Norwegen / Dänemark
Director:
Production Company:
Exposed Film Productions AS
Berlinale Section:
Panorama
Berlinale Category:
Documentary Film
Teddy Award:
Best Documentary/ Essay Film

Esben Benestad is a doctor in a small town in Norway. He has his own surgery, has written two books on sex education and writes a column in a men’s magazine; he is also a liberal politician. However, Esben Benestad also has a second identity in Norway as Esther Pirelli, sexual therapist and occasional actress. Esben Benestad is a transvestite. In this film, Esben Benestad’s son conveys his father’s story with warmth, humour and irony; he provides a personal portrait of this enigmatic man, without, however, allowing himself to succumb entirely to his father’s obvious talent for performance. As the film’s director Even Benestad says, “Contrary to my father’s idea that this film would promote him as a colourful and different person who uses all his time and efforts to combat cultural bureaucracy, I sought to make a deeply personal portrait which takes into account the father-son relationship, in which the amount of harm one person’s self-realisation can have on another is established. Dad’s transvestism forms the basis of the film and is a recurring theme that guides us through a somewhat different family saga. It was important for me to show that my family is not unique. There are many families like mine.”

Trailer on YouTube

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