Kitchen Stories

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Salmer fra kjøkkenet
Kitchen Stories
Kitchen stories poster.jpg
Directed by Bent Hamer
Produced by Jörgen Bergmark
Bent Hamer
Written by Jörgen Bergmark
Bent Hamer
Music by Hans Mathisen
Release date
  • 17 January 2003 (2003-01-17)
Running time
95 minutes
Country Norway

Kitchen Stories (Norwegian: Salmer fra Kjøkkenet) is a 2003 Norwegian film by Bent Hamer.


Swedish efficiency researchers come to Norway to study Norwegian men, in an effort to help optimize their use of their kitchen. Folke Nilsson (Tomas Norström) is assigned to study the habits of Isak Bjørvik (Joachim Calmeyer). By the rules of the research institute, Folke has to sit on an umpire's chair in Isak's kitchen and observe him from there, but never talk to him. Isak volunteered for the program in promise of a horse, but only receives a dala horse. Isak stops using his kitchen and observes Folke through a hole in the ceiling instead. Isak's friend Grant visits him often. However, the two lonely men, observer and observed, slowly overcome the initial Norwegian-Swede and subject-observer distrust and become friends. Grant is a survivor from concentration camps and feels Folke is stealing his friend. The friendship between Folke and Isak costs Folke his job during an inspection. Folke is forced to leave and he drives up-to the Swedish border, but then returns, only to find Isak has died of a broken heart. Folke, now alone, occupies Isak's home and takes up Isak's friendship with Grant.


Bent Hamer was amused after perusing post-war research books on the efficiency of the Swedish housewife, and pondered on the idea of research being done on men. This led to him making the film Kitchen Stories.



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