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Greenland seems a world away, but its people’s miseries reinforce Solomon’s lament that “there’s nothing new under the sun.” Anywhere.
The new documentary The Fight for Greenland focuses on political and social struggles unsettling Earth’s largest island. Should Greenland break from the Kingdom of Denmark? Can Greenlanders halt alcoholism, sexual abuse, drug addiction, and suicide?
The film follows four young Greenlanders with different ideas. Tillie Martinussen and Kaaleraq Andersen are running for parliament seats. Martinussen co-founds the Cooperation Party, whose members want Denmark to help Greenland become more self-sustaining while remaining united. Andersen campaigns for total independence.
Josef Tarrak-Petrussen and Paninnguaq Heilmann have two children. Tarrak-Petrussen’s rap-infused dramatic performances highlight Greenland’s proud past but also its high suicide rate. He and Heilmann, both pro-independence, vow not to repeat their parents’ sins: alcoholism and child abandonment.
The film is peaceful and beautifully shot (unrated, with a few subtitled expletives and brief nude illustrations).
Political independence is a noble goal. But as America has demonstrated, it doesn’t bring freedom from sin and misery.
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