A Swedish festival offers solo cinema to a nurse on an island

A small screen inside the “Pater Noster” lighthouse, on the island of Hamneskar (Sweden) on January 30, 2021

A nurse confronted with covid-19 on the front line was chosen from thousands of candidates for a unique experience: a week of screenings of the Gothenburg Film Festival just for her on an isolated island in the world, off the west coast of Sweden.

Hamneskär is a tiny windswept rocky island, 250 meters long and 150 meters wide, with an iconic bright red lighthouse, the “Pater Noster”, with a few huts nearby.

This is where Lisa Enroth, a 41-year-old Swede, will have the privilege of being able to watch all 70 films in competition at the Gothenburg festival for a week, in the former lighthouse keeper’s house converted into a small hotel.

Lisa Enroth, 41, an ER nurse and movie buff, on a boat to Hamneskar Island, Sweden, on January 30, 2021

Lisa Enroth, 41, an ER nurse and movie buff, on a boat to Hamneskar Island, Sweden, on January 30, 2021

Therefore, very far from the tumult of his daily life in the emergency room of a hospital, in the middle of the covid-19 pandemic.

Shortly before arriving at her haven of peace on Saturday, the nurse, warm with a jacket and a woolen hat, said that she submitted her candidacy to get away from day to day, marked for almost a year by the health crisis.

The “Pater Noster” lighthouse on the island of Hamneskar, off the west coast of Sweden, on January 30, 2021

“It was exhausting,” he told AFP. “So it is a great opportunity to relax and reflect on the year that has just passed.”

The island, which can only be reached by boat or helicopter, does not have inhabitants all year round but welcomes some visitors. She lives subject to the vagaries of the weather.

A screen has been installed in the lantern room, at the top of the lighthouse, overlooking an impressive landscape. There is another one inside the house and Lisa also has a tablet in case she prefers to watch movies outside.

The only contact the nurse will have with the world will be through a diary to talk about the movies, although there will be another person on the island for security reasons.

– “Heroin” of the covid –

The festival was surprised by the success of the initiative: more than 12,000 entries from 45 countries.

For this edition of 2021 in an unpublished format, on the topic “Social distances”, Lisa has managed to convince by her status as a “heroine” against the coronavirus, according to the organizers.

In her emergency department in Skövde, in central Sweden, Lisa Enroth experienced the two waves of coronavirus in the Nordic country, which applied a less strict strategy during the pandemic.

“I really want to relax a little and not be afraid of infecting people,” confesses Lisa, referring to the anguish she experienced when she returned from work.

“We have had many cases of covid this year, all the patients admitted to the hospital went through the emergency room, we have seen them all,” he says.

The organizers are convinced that they have made the right choice.

Beyond Lisa’s cinephile profile, the nurse is one of the people “committed to the front line against the covid-19 pandemic,” says Jonas Holmberg, creative director of the festival.

“In these turbulent times, it feels good to be able to offer this unique experience to one of the many heroes of the healthcare system who work so hard against covid-19,” explains Mirja Wester, head of the event.

In this exceptional year, the films selected by the festival will also be shown online, and in two locations in Gothenburg: a cinema and an ice hockey rink converted into a theater for the occasion, in which also only one person per projection.

The opportunity to live a new experience according to Jonas Holmberg: “the way we consume movies changes the way we live them”.


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