Björk is not only a talented singer, but she also starred in a couple of movies and won prizes for her acting.
We managed to find her first movie Glerbrot in which she acts a woman named Maria. The movie title means “Broken Glass”. You can actually watch the movie on Youtube:
However, the movie is in Islandic, so if you do not speak Islandic, you can only enjoy seeing Björk on screen.
We found that the movie was recorded in 1987, although it can be found that it was 1986 or even 1988.The movie was directed by Kristín Jóhannesdóttir.
In 1990 Björk acted in the American-Islandic movie The Juniper Tree, directed by Nietzscha Keen (1952-2004). The movie was based on the fairytale by the Brothers Grimm.
The genre of this movie is drama and fantasy. Björk stars with Bryndis Petra Bragadóttir, Valdimar Örn Flygenring.
Björk’s role is that of Margit who with her older sister Katla escapes their home after their mother is killed for practicing witchcraft. Katla puts a spell on a young farmer Jóhann who falls in love with her and thus helps her and her sister. However, Jóhann’s son is aware of the situation and tries to talk his father against Katla. The plot revolves about the problem of the Jóhann’s family and Margit and Katla who wish to stay there and control them with witchcraft. On imdb (https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0138545/?ref_=nv_sr_1) the movie has a fair rating (6.8).
10 years after, Björk got the role in the movie Dancer in the Dark. The movie genre is Crime, Drama and Musical. It is about Selma Jezková, a Czechoslovakian immigrant, and her preteen son Gene who together move to America. The movie has a really good rating on imdb (https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0168629/?ref_=_41). The movie was nominated for Oscar in 2001 for best music and for the Golden Globe for best performance by the actress as well as for the best original song. On the other hand, the movie won Bodil Award for Best Actress, Cannes Film Festival Award for Best Actress (Prix d’interprétation féminine), Edda Award for Best Leading Actress, European Film Award for Best Actress, European Film Awards – Jameson People’s Choice Award for Best Actress, National Board of Review Award for Outstanding Dramatic Music Performance, Online Film Critics Society Award for Best Breakthrough Performance, Robert Award for Best Actress in a Leading Role, Russian Guild of Film Critics Award for Best Foreign Actress.
You can check the official trailer for the movie here:
Björk wrote music for the movie, which was launched in the album Selmasongs. Some songs featured contributions by Mark Bell and the texts were written by von Trier and Sjón. Three songs from Rodgers and Hammerstein’s The Sound of Music were also used in this movie.
There is another intriguing thing linked to this movie. Allegedly, Björk stated that she was sexually harassed by the film director. She posted on Facebook that she “became aware” that “it is a universal thing that a director can touch and harass his actresses at will and the institution of film allows it”. Even though she did not tell the name of the director, so we cannot be sure who he is, she said that she was Danish, which made many assume that it was Lars Von Trier who directed Dancer in the Dark.
The musician did not name the film-maker, but said he had “a staff of dozens who enabled … and encouraged” his behavior.
Björk was not afraid to speak up having been inspired by other victims who spoke about their abuse. She also said she managed to escape this abuse because she had “no ambitions in the acting world” but said she “worried” for others who did not.
The movie title reminds of the Fred Astaire/Cyd Charisse duet “Dancing in the Dark” from the 1953 movie The Band Wagon.
Björk stated that she would not act anymore after this movie. However, she did appear in Drawing Restraint 9 in 2005. It was even said that she did not want to act in Dancer in the Dark in the first place, but that she made an exception for von Trier.
Only a couple of hours after Björk got awarded as the best actress at the Cannes Film Festival, she said that she would not act in movies anymore and that she wished to continue with her music career. In fact she said that this movie would be her “first and last”. And when asked if she would perhaps change her mind, she said “have to do records now. I only have 50 years left, and I’ve got a lot of records to make”.
Dancer in the Dark got different critiques. For instance, Margaret Pomeranz on The Movie Show gave the movie five stars. On the other hand, while David Stratton gave it a zero. The Guardian wrote that the film was “one of the worst films, one of the worst artworks and perhaps one of the worst things in the history of the world”.
In 2005 Björk starred in the movie Drawing Restraint 9, which was a film project by visual artist Matthew Barney. It is a series consisting of 19 parts. Björk also composed music (launched on One Little Indian) for this love story placed in Japan. We can see Matthey Barney’s interest in religious rites of the Shinto religion, tea ceremonies, the history of whaling, etc.
The premiere of the movie occurred at the 62nd Venice Film Festival and was screened at the Toronto International Film Festival in September 2005.
In the movie we can see shō (Japanese mouth organ) played by Mayumi Miyata.
In 2007 Björk gave her voice in the computer animated movie Anna and the Moods done by the Icelandic digital design and animation company CAOZ from Reykjavik. The main protagonist is Anna Young, a girl who develops a serious illness which makes her change her mood a lot.
The movie was written by Sjón Sigurdsson who was nominated for the Academy Award. The movie was released on February 9, 2007. Anna and the Moods won the Edda Award for Best Short Film. The movie got a 6 on imdb (https://www.imdb.com/title/tt0952641/). The last “movie” with Björk was Biophilia Live which is basically a concert film, recorded in 2014 and directed and edited by Peter Strickland and Nick Fenton. Björk is on her Biophilia Tour from June 2011 and ending in September 2013. The film was made at Alexandra Palace in London on 3 September 2013, and had a theatrical premiere at the Tribeca Film Festival on 26 April 2014.