Freak Out!

Carl Javér | Sweden/Germany/Denmark/Norway | 2014 | 89 minutes

If you think the hippies invented free love and headbands, think again. At the beginning of the 20th Century, a group of radical thinkers broke away from mainstream society, purchased a bit of land on top of a Swiss mountain, and set about changing the world. Their first act was to burn the accoutrements of a rigid and class-bound society. Corsets were the first of many things to be torched. But remaking the social order is not as simple as donning a smock and letting your beard grow out. As the new community of Monte Verità (the Mountain of Truth) set about learning how to feed and support themselves, the old world order was not so eager to embrace feminism, veganism, free love, and nudity. Even as the parents of the group members cut off all support, the list of artists and thinkers who frequented the place reads like a laundry list of the great minds of the last century. Freud, Jung, and even Lenin, made regular visitations. One of the most central figures at Monte Verità was Otto Gross, a protégé of Freud and the only child of Hans Gross, who invented the science of criminology. Otto Gross’s later trial and incarceration (at the behest of his father) supposedly inspired Franz Kafka to write The Trial. Hermann Hesse (author of Steppenwolf) was similarly inspired by the commune’s residents, which included Gusto Gräser, whose proto-hippy garb and messianic ways attracted legions of followers. Choreographer and dancer Mary Wigman worked closely with dance pioneer Rudolf Laban at Monte Verità before setting out to reinvent modern dance. A recreation of Ida Hofmann, one of original five founding members, provides a narrative, while archival photos, animation, and reenactments bring to vivid life this long-forgotten site of cultural revolution. Carl Javér’s beautifully animated documentary is a reminder that it is always possible to reinvent the world.

Freak Out has been in 20 something Film Festivals and a winner of 10 Festival Prizes so far.

Freak Out have been screened at following festivals so far:

Goteborg International Film Festival/Sweden | Tempo Documentary Film Festival/Sweden | Dokufilm Festival/Norway | Makedox Film Festival/Macedonia | DOXA Film Festival/Canada | Docville Film Festival/Belgium | World Media Festival/Germany | Ammarnäs Dokumentärfilmsfestival/Sweden | Milano Film Festival/Italy | Astra Film Festival/Romania | Underhill Film Festival / Montenegro | Utopia Film Festival/USA | Yukon Film Festival Avaliable Light/Canada | Docudays Film Festival/Ukraine | CineEco Seia Film Festival/Portugal | Planet in Focus Film Festival/Canada | Cinema Planeta/Mexico


Freak Out have been awarded at the following film festivals:

Green Film Festival in Seoul/South Korea Awards | Honorary Mention Award at Tempo Film Festival/Sweden | Grand Prix & Main Award at World Media Festival/Germany | Main Award at Makedox/Macedonia | Main Award & Eleonora Roosevelt Award at Utopia Film Festival/USA | Main Award & Audience Award at Green Film Festival/South Korea | Prémio Série Award CineEco Seia Film Festival/Portugal | Audience Award at Cinema Planeta/Mexico


Image opposite side: Screening of Freak Out at outdoor cinema at Makedox Macedonia

Carl Javér, born in 1972, has worked as a director and editor on several documentaries since leaving film school (Documentary Film Production at Biskops Arnö, 1993-94). He has directed seven documentaries including three major documentary series. Workshop leader and lecturer in documentary filmmaking. Selected films as director include: Tel al-Zaatar – The road back (1996, SVT), nominated and complimented at ECHO TV and Radio Awards. Heroin (2003, TV4), Warehouse No 180 (2005, SVT) and Everyone Finds Love But Me (2007 SVT). The documentary series include The Hospital (1999 TV4) The Highschool (2001 TV4) and The Crash (2010 SVT). He also made the short Freia and the Wannabe Indians (SVT 2012). Freak Out is his first major documentary on a European level that has been complimented with 10 film festival prices around the world so far.