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March 28th – April 2nd, 2017 / Cinema Muzeul Țăranului & Cinema Elvire Popesco / the 7th edition


Directed by: 
Cinema Muzeul Țăranului - Wednesday, March 29, 2017 - 20:30
Cinema Muzeul Țăranului - Thursday, March 30, 2017 - 18:00
Written by: 
Jonas Odell & Richard Dinter
Frippe Jonsäter
Niklas Lundgren
Johan Edström
Apparat Filmproduktion AB
Romanian Premiere
With the support of

When the family fails to satisfy basic psychological needs, computer games may step in, offering - albeit only in a virtual version - rewards, freedom and a connection to other individuals sharing the same interests. Escaping occasionally to some parallel world and morphing into a daring, powerful and highly self-confident hero can be refreshing. Yet, refusing to return to real life spells destructive dependence. Jonas Odell uses in I Was a Winner the very imagery of the gaming world to deliver the personal narratives of three people who have experienced computer game addiction. Under the shape of their avatars and wandering through the landscape of their respective games, the characters tell uncanny stories of a to and fro motion between the real and the illusory, and of the struggle you need to put up to break free when the gaming goes beyond fun. The real world with all its imperfections is out there, waiting, provided you are strong enough to log out. (Adina Marin, BIEFF 2017)

Jonas Odell

Jonas Odell specializes in making films mixing live action and various mixed media animation techniques. He has also scripted, co-scripted and written the music to a number of productions. In some of his more recent short films he has explored a mix of documentary, staged and animated elements. He is the recipient of a Golden Bear for his short fillm Never Like the First Time!, awarded at the Berlin International Film Festival in 2006.

Festivals, awards: 
  • International Short Film Festival Clermont-Ferrand 2017
  • Tribeca Film Festival 2016
  • Göteborg Film Festival 2016
  • Pravo Ljudski Film Festival 2016
  • DocPoint – Helsinki 2016
  • Uppsala International Short Film Festival 2016
  • Palm Springs International Film Festival 2016
  • DokuFest 2016
  • Animateka 2016
Director's statement:
There were two starting points for the idea for the film. One was something I remembered from years back, when we used to have a Playstation game console set up in the place where I worked. People used to play for a while and then get back to work. The game they played was usually Grand Theft Auto, where the main character is this quite aggressive guy who pulls people out of cars and drives off. When the player left the game, this very self confident character suddenly just stood there hanging his head and taking a few aimless steps back and forth. Somehow, I found that image quite moving – the usually confident hero of the game suddenly looking quite lost... The other starting point was me reading about game addiction. It struck me that, although there were quite a number of articles on the subject, you never heard the stories of the addicts themselves. (Jonas Odell interviewed at the International Short Film Festival Clermont-Ferrand 2017)