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Sound of Noise is a 2010 Swedish-French comedy-crime film written and directed by Ola Simonsson and Johannes Stjärne Nilsson. It tells the story of a group of musicians who illegally perform music on objects in the various institutions of a city. The film is a follow-up to the 2001 short film Music for One Apartment and Six Drummers, which was made by the same people and followed the same basic concept. The title comes from the Italian futurist Luigi Russolo's 1913 manifesto The Art of Noises.[1]

Sound of Noise
Sound of Noise.jpg
Theatrical release poster
Directed byOla Simonsson
Johannes Stjärne Nilsson
Produced byJim Birmant
Guy Péchard
Christophe Audeguis
Olivier Guerpillon
Written byOla Simonsson
Johannes Stjärne Nilsson
Jim Birmant
StarringBengt Nilsson
Sanna Persson
Magnus Börjeson
Music byMagnus Börjeson
Fred Avril
CinematographyCharlotta Tengroth
Edited byStefan Sundlöf
Dfm Fiktion
Distributed byNordisk Film (Sweden)
Wild Bunch Distribution (France)
Release date
  • 18 May 2010 (2010-05-18) (Cannes Film Festival)
  • 25 December 2010 (2010-12-25) (Sweden)
  • 29 December 2010 (2010-12-29) (France)
Running time
102 minutes



A group of six anarchist drummers led by musician Sanna Persson and a conductor named Magnus set out to make music with objects that are generally considered non-musical. They plan out a concert with four humorously titled movements to be played across the city after carefully analyzing what objects can be used to make good music. All the while, the group is pursued by Amadeus Warnebring, a tone-deaf policeman born into a distinguished musical family[2] who hates the sound of music.

The group begins by playing in a surgery room using a notable TV reporter who has been admitted to the hospital for hemorrhoid surgery.[3] Their next piece is set in a bank where they ostensibly hold up the staff and customers. They then feed banknotes into the shredding machine for a distorted bass sound. The next piece uses bulldozers thumping the ground at the fountain in front of an opera house. For the crescendo, they strike the fountain knocking it to the ground. The last piece involves them hanging from high tension power cables and playing the suspended cables like violins.

Warnebring eventually comes to realize that the objects and people used by the anarchists as instruments are rendered silent to his ears after the fact, due to his tone-deafness. From this he forms a plan to force the drummers into using the entire city as an instrument by way of rhythmically controlling the power supply. The plan succeeds: Persson observes that the ambient sounds around her have become musical, while Warnebring can hear no such sounds. The film ends with the anarchists exiled from the city and performing as a lounge act as Warnebring enjoys a silent orchestral concert elsewhere.


  • Bengt Nilsson as Amadeus Warnebring
  • Sanna Persson as Sanna Persson
  • Magnus Börjeson as Magnus
  • Marcus Haraldson Boij as Marcus
  • Fredrik Myhr as Myran
  • Anders Vestergård as Anders
  • Johannes Björk as Johannes
  • Sven Ahlström as Oscar Warnebring
  • Ralph Carlsson as Hagman
  • Paula McManus as Colette
  • Peter Schildt as police commissioner
  • Pelle Öhlund as Sanchez
  • Dag Malmberg as Levander
  • Björn Granath as hospital director
  • Anders Jansson as Bosse


The music was composed for the film by Magnus Börjeson while the story was written [4] and completed by Fred Avril. Sound of Noise was initiated by BLISS from France. The film is a coproduction between BLISS and Dfm fiktion.[5][6] It received ten million kronor from the Swedish Film Institute.[7] The film was shot in CinemaScope and filming took place in Malmö from 28 July to 1 October 2008.[7][8]


The film premiered on 18 May 2010 in the International Critics' Week of the 63rd Cannes Film Festival.[5] It has been released in Sweden on Christmas Day 2010 through Nordisk Film.[9] Wild Bunch Distribution released it in France on the 29th of December 2010.[10]


Critical responseEdit

indieWire named the film Bonnie and Clyde on Drums.[11]

The New York Times finished its article describing the film as a dry treat - a solid, self-aware cult pleasure.[12]

Alissa Simon in Variety called it a delightful comic cocktail of modern city symphony, police procedural and love story.[13]

Peter Brunette of The Hollywood Reporter wrote that the basic premise of this delightful comedy from Sweden is one of the most imaginative you'll ever see. It's all based on music—raw, elemental and percussive—out of which genuine laughs are wrung from beginning to end.[14]


Sound of Noise received the Young Critics Award and the Grand Rail d'Or at the International Critics' Week.[15] As the festival run continued, it won the prize for Best Fantastic Film at Fantastic Fest in Austin.[15] It won the Free Spirit Award and the Audience Award at the 2010 Warsaw International Film Festival.[15] At the Molodist International Film Festival in Kiev, the film received both the award for Best Full-length Film and the Audience Prize.[16] It won a Best Achievement Guldbagge Award for "a virtuous mergence of sound and music".[17]


  1. ^ Lumholdt, Jan (2010-05-14). "De kan Cannes". Svenska Dagbladet (in Swedish). Retrieved 2010-09-28.
  2. ^ "2011 Seattle International Film Festival". Archived from the original on September 18, 2011. Retrieved December 19, 2011.
  3. ^ Lee, Noah (September 26, 2010). Sound of Noise. Film Threat
  4. ^ Vickhoff, Alexander (2008-08-01). "Jakt på sex mystiska trummisar på Operan". Sydsvenskan (in Swedish). Retrieved 2010-09-28.
  5. ^ a b "Sound of Noise PressKit" (PDF). International Critics' Week. Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-06-15. Retrieved 2010-09-28.
  6. ^ "Sound of Noise (2010): Companies". Swedish Film Database. Swedish Film Institute. Retrieved 2010-09-28.
  7. ^ a b Roger, Susanne (2008-09-30). "Långfilmsdebutanter får 10 miljoner". Filmnyheterna (in Swedish). Swedish Film Institute. Retrieved 2010-09-28.
  8. ^ "Sound of Noise (2010): Filming locations". Swedish Film Database. Swedish Film Institute. Retrieved 2010-10-04.
  9. ^ "Sound of Noise (2010): Basic facts". Swedish Film Database. Swedish Film Institute. Retrieved 2010-09-28.
  10. ^ "Sound of Noise". AlloCiné (in French). Tiger Global. Retrieved 2010-12-22.
  11. ^ Missing or empty |title= (help)
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  14. ^ Missing or empty |title= (help)
  15. ^ a b c "Sound of Noise (2010): Awards". Swedish Film Database. Swedish Film Institute. Retrieved 2010-11-01.
  16. ^ Kozlov, Vladimir (2010-11-01). "Sergey Loznitsa's 'My Joy' Awarded Grand Prix at the International Film Festival Molodist". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved 2010-11-01.
  17. ^ Roger, Susanna; Zillén, Fredrik (2011-01-24). "Guldbagge för särskilda insatser". Filmnyheterna (in Swedish). Swedish Film Institute. Retrieved 2011-01-25. För ett virtuost sammanfogande av ljud och musik i Sound of Noise.

External linksEdit