Jorgen + Anne er sant by Vigdis HjorthA book about the truth, that love is not exclusively a grown-up thing even though this is something one forget too easily as one actually grows up.
The title Jorgen + Anne er sant/Jorgen + Anne Is True is a romantic platitude. It is a thing one carves (preferably replacing the names with one’s own and that of the loved one) into the stem of a tree to prove ones feelings for another, the idea being that this love is as eternal as the carving. (The irony being, of course, that often the tree dies prematurely because of said carving. But that is besides the point.) Yet, the book itself is not a shallow love story. It’s not one of the many books of that ilk, that are hastily thrown together after a recipe of tropes because the author needed some kind of income. Actually, its value does not stem primarily from the story at all, but from the lesson which hand-in-hand accompany it.? And this lesson is in no way plat.
The book begins as any good lecture does, by describing what one is supposed to understand after attending it. In other words, it sets the purpose, and the book sets its purpose thus:
There are some adults who believe that one doesn’t fall in love until one become thirteen years old and attend the seventh grade.?
But one does.
And some never again fall as much in love during their whole life as when they were ten years old and attended fourth. (p. 5; reviewer’s own translation)
All of which is undeniably true. I do not remember any time when we were more preoccupied with who had which girlfriend or boyfriend than aged ten. It was inescapable to the point of nausea. You were hard pressed to find someone who would want to just take a bicycle ride somewhere or enjoy a Nintendo game of some sort. Even if they did it was merely background noise to the topic of that age. Who loved who was almost everything anyone spoke about. The period was so intense that when the kids finally discovered alcohol and rebellion at age twelve,? it was a relief. Perhaps it is this intensity which the author speaks of when putting forth the final claim, that some never fall as much in love ever again. It is difficult to tell, but if so then one could safely argue against it that the experience of love changes as one ages and which love is ‘the most’ is therefore impossible to assess. In that regard the author’s claim is a slightly naive one. Yet, if the point is merely to show that the heart of a ten year old is every bit as capable as that of a grown person – and, to be fair, this appears to be what the author intended – then the sentiment must certainly be correct.
The heart which the reader gets to behold is that of Anne Lunde. She is quite the rebel. Some might even call her ‘scoundrel,’ be it lovingly or disapprovingly. She fights with the boys, arm-wrestles (and wins most of the time), manages to keep her clothes in a constant state of dirt and disrepair, and would rather steal her older brother’s coolest pair of pants than wear a skirt. She is often not your go-to girl if you want to make the wisest choices, but she will likely provide you with some of the more entertaining ones. That is not to say that she is a mean person. She may be brash and more inclined to act than think things through, but there is rarely any malice behind what she does. She is a stumbling, but unstoppable adventurer – and adventurer as she is, of course she would fall head over heels in love with the new boy. After meeting Jorgen just once it becomes clear to her that she must become his girlfriend or her life would hold no more value ever again. A dramatic notion, but so very typical of how love works when in the hands (or rather the heart) of a ten year old; and a desperate notion, which demands desperate measures of the kind where negative consequences is a likely outcome.
A child’s love is indeed childish and thus demands a language which reflect that. The author has realized this and every thought, action, or observation is undeniably that of a child, voiced as a child would. For example, that Anne has a best friend who is more important than anyone else in the world – perhaps except Jorgen, of course – with whom she shares the secret code word ‘tsjugga-tsjugga,’ which they got from the squeaky sound made by a garden gate. Or the need for a notebook wherein she can pour out her excess of energy, to make something from all the bubbling emotions which threaten to burst out. Or that love can only be declared in secret exchanges of letters, because neither part is yet ready to deal with such feelings in the vicinity of others. Through the way the book is written we are presented the world of a ten year old’s love. It is a very limited one, confined largely to the neighbourhood where their friends and family live, and where only friends and family matter. It is a world where the small things are often greater than the big ones, and to hold a special someone’s hand can outweigh just about anything, but where a kiss might just be too big and perhaps a little bit frightening. By constructing the story with such a focus on what is childish it achieves something essential. Because, in order for the book to convince the reader that its lesson is valid it first needs to convince the reader that the story itself is a valid representation of a child’s point of view. Fortunately, the foundation beneath the lesson is a believable and thus solid one.
Because the lesson is probably already conspicuous to the ten-year-old reader, one might argue that Jorgen + Anne Is True is a more important book for Anne’s parents than her peers. Grown-ups who have forgotten what it was like to be ten and in love, will rediscover the sensation here. It will allow them to better understand their sons and daughters, to let them see that what might be perceived as a period of pure chaos, makes a surprising amount of sense if one just knows how to view it. In other words, the lesson is a very valuable one for grown-ups. Of course, the book was written in 1984 and thus might seem a bit dated at first glance – but then, how much does love really change as ages pass? This reviewer suspects that it has not changed much at all. Replace love-letters and diaries with smartphones and social media, imagine how the new resources can be used for the same gains, and one should arrive pretty close to the modern equivalent of Anne’s experience. But the importance of the book to an adult audience should not be taken as a diminishment of its value for younger readers. Validation of one’s feelings is nothing to scoff at after all. One might even attain a coping mechanism or two from it. Not to mention that it if viewed as a simple romance, the story still manages to make the reader care about its protagonist like so few other books do, making it an excellent read for its own sake. Unfortunately the book has yet to be translated to English. There exist versions in German, Swedish, Ukrainian, and Icelandic, each highly praised, but everyone else would have to look to the movie from 2011? to enjoy the story.
1. The quote found a few lines down consist of the very first sentences of the book and they, are followed by a few sentences more which summarise the entire plot of the story. It is thus quite obvious that the plot is secondary to the lesson.
2. The book was written in 1984 and then this was true, in Norway thirteen year olds did attend seventh grade back then and continued to do so until 1997. In ‘97 the nine-year primary school was replaced with a ten-year one. Now first graders are six years old when they enter school, whereas they used to be seven. In other words, thirteen year olds attend eight grade now. Likewise a ten year old now attends fifth grade.
3. This is unreasonably early to begin consuming alcohol and I have since discovered that, while this was the norm where I grew up, most places didn’t begin until much later.
4. The movie’s Norwegian title stays true to that of the book with only a minor alteration (Jorgen + ANNE = sant) but for some reason it is known as Totally True Love in English. This is an odd choice – why would they replace an eye-catching title with one that is nothing but a generic chameleon? No wonder it had such limited success abroad. The movie was made twenty-seven years after the book and our lives have changed somewhat during that period, so it made sense to update the story to the time which the movie was made in. The movie therefore more closely resembles the world which children grow up in today (review written in 2019). Yet, the differences between book and movie are small. And, most importantly, the lesson is entirely intact. In fact, they even improve upon it by allowing the parents to give more appropriate responses to the issues that their children are dealing with. It also takes the opportunity to deal with how beauty is portrayed in the media and what beauty really is. The only let down is how the movie deals with the story of Bandit Helga. Anne identifies with Helga as a rebel in love, and her story influences many of the things Anne does, but this point is obscured by the movie – it’s not entirely lost, but it is treated in a very understated manner, so much so that it becomes pointless with regard to the movie’s young audience. Still, the movie manages to replicate almost all of what was important to the book, with child actors who manage their roles better than do ninety percent of adult actors, and which presents a ten year old’s love story with such conviction and emotion that it is hard not to be taken by it. In short, besides the criticism on how the movie handles the story of Bandit Helga, there is nothing that makes it lesser when compared to the book.
Jorgen + Anne = sant (2011)
Anne does not get why everyone around her is talking about love. Scandinavian film directors, and particularly Norwegian ones such as Anne Sewitsky who worked on Totally True Love, have a unique approach to films about childhood. This film proves both of those concepts wrong. Have you ever been in love? If you nod your head, you are sure to enjoy Totally True Love. Daniel fait face Under the Sun
Watch Jorgen anne = sant (2011) movie Full HD
But that is of no hindrance to Anne; she is willing to go further than anyone to win him over. Director: Anne Sewitsky.
Anne, 10, is an energetic girl whose favourite activities are tree-climbing and running. But that is of no hindrance to Anne; she is willing to go further than anyone to win him over. Producer on the Move — Norway. Norwegian anthropologist and explorer Thor Heyerdahl, whose sea voyage on a wooden raft between South America and the Polynesian Islands is depicted in the film, is a well-known figure in Russia. Fewer local releases and no real blockbusters will be substantially compensated by a strong autumn season, according to the Norwegian Film Institute. Well ahead of Christmas, Norwegian cinema statistics gave the local industry a present it could not have imagined: by early December, Norwegian films reached 2,, admissions — the best result