In 1973 Greenland had been a part of the Kingdom of Denmark for over 200 years. The only formal education available to the country’s inhabitants was 4,000 kilometres away in Denmark. Here, far away from home, a young generation of Greenlanders found their voice. Malik Høegh and Per Berthelsen met as students in Copenhagen and founded Sumé, the first rock band to sing in Greenlandic. Their political songs decried the social injustices in Greenland and were soon to be found on every turntable in the former colony. The charismatic Malik's poetic texts made their listeners want to use their marginalised native mother tongue and become politically active. Sumé’s songs became the soundtrack of the first protests of young Greenlanders against the Danish administration and for autonomy. After tours of Greenland and Scandinavia and an offer from Procol Harum, the two musicians decided not to continue their professional career. The three albums they released before 1979 were to accompany Greenland as it became an autonomous country within the Kingdom. As this atmospheric documentary from Greenland demonstrates, Sumé’s anti-colonial message remains relevant and worth listening to today.
Denmark / Norway 2014, 73 min
Inuk Silis Høegh
© Internationale Filmfestspiele Berlin