Touch Movie

Touch Movie

After receiving an early-stage dementia diagnosis at the outset of the COVID-19 pandemic, widower Kristofer leaves behind his Reykjavik home hoping to solve the greatest mystery of his life. As a student in London five decades earlier, Kristofer had fallen in love with Miko, whose father owned the Japanese restaurant where they both worked. But at the height of their whirlwind affair, Miko abruptly vanished. Now, as panic about the virus spreads around the world, Kristofer sets out to find his soulmate, resolving to follow her trail wherever it might lead"even back to Miko's birthplace of Hiroshima"before his memories of their singular connection are lost forever in time.


From acclaimed Icelandic filmmaker Baltasar Kormákur comes a sensitively observed, magnificently crafted globe-spanning tale about the complexities of love and the unbreakable bonds that can tether two people through the ages.


Touch in cinemas 12 July 2024






Reading the novel Touch (Snerting), I realized this was the love story that I had been looking for. It begins simply enough, with widower Kristofer searching for his first love, a woman who disappeared 50 years ago. As the story unfolded, I became totally gripped by the way author Ólafur Jóhann Ólafsson travels back through time and space to connect his readers to one of history's most horrific events. By focusing on one couple whose love and life together was lost as one of the million consequences of a long- ended war, the book explores how trauma from conflict can impact generations to come.


I appreciated the gentle way he told this tale"without finger-pointing and polarized viewpoints. I thought it was a great reminder how catastrophically things went wrong at the end of World War II and how close we are to repeating the mistakes of the past.

Having grown up in the shadow of the Cold War, the atom bomb was a constant threat. I am not sure younger generations understand its dangers and repercussions as we did.


As I am probably mostly well known in the U.S. for bigger films of the action and survival genres, audiences might see a dramatic love story as a departure for me. But the fact is that I started my career as an actor and a stage director starring in and helming theatrical productions of works by Shakespeare, Ibsen and Chekhov, even Tis a Pity

She's a Whore by John Ford. My early Icelandic filmography includes black comedies, dramatic thrillers and character-driven dramas, often focusing on family.


I had heard many real stories about people looking for a lost lover or a loved one in the later parts of their lives. Even Egill Ólafsson, who plays old Kristofer in TOUCH, told me that his mother divorced his father to find her first love, with whom she then spent the last years of her life. That fact made the film's narrative all the more real for both of us. Having been recently diagnosed with Parkinson Plus, Egill's physical and mental state made shooting TOUCH more complicated, yet it only ended up deepening the journey. Realizing that Egill has some of the same health issues as his character, we chose to embrace his condition and push through any challenges. Working with Egill was an absolute delight: his body might have grown tired at times, but the artist inside Egill stayed young throughout, filled with boundless creative energy.

Kristofer's story connected with me on many levels. From my own experience, I know that things one might do early in life"out of inexperience or lack of thoughtfulness or empathy"can come back to haunt you. The need for closure becomes a heavy burden. Hopefully, TOUCH can speak to both young and old, those who have lost love and those who are eagerly seeking to find it.


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