The Painter and the Thief
Dir. Benjamin Ree. 2020. 102 mins. Desperate for answers about the theft of two of her prized paintings, Czech artist Barbora Kysilkova seeks out and befriends Karl-Bertil Nordland, the career criminal who was convicted of stealing them. After inviting her thief to sit for a portrait, the two form an improbable relationship, and an inextricable bond that will forever link them, even as Nordland endures further personal and legal issues, and Kysilkova hunts for her lost paintings. Winner of a Special Jury Prize for Creative Storytelling at the 2020 Sundance Film Festival, The Painter and the Thief
ingeniously offers alternating narratives and continuously adds layers to a story that’s profoundly surprising, provocative, and moving. View trailer.
“Enormously intimate and gripping. A documentary that feels like an elegant fairy tale.” – Alissa Wilkinson, Vox