The Seer and the Unseen

Award Winner

Film Info

Film Year: 2019

Film Duration: 86 min

Country: United States

Language: English, Icelandic


Sara Dosa

Film Category

Best Feature Documentary


Set against the spectacular landscape of Iceland, THE SEER AND THE UNSEEN is an magic realist documentary about invisible elves, financial collapse, and the surprising power of belief. The documentary follows Ragnhildur “Ragga” Jónsdóttir, a grandmother and “seer” who has the ability to communicate directly with a parallel realm of elves, or huldufólk (hidden people) – invisible spirits of nature that over half of Iceland believes in. As one of the country’s most respected seers, government officials, businesses and individuals enlist Ragga to consult the elves to learn where they can and cannot develop land. But when Ragga is called upon to be the elves’ ‘Lorax’ and speak on behalf of nature under threat, she enters a political battle to save an ecologically important lava field set to be razed by road construction – just one of the many needless, reactionary projects spurred by Iceland’s sensational financial meltdown in 2008. Through Ragga’s heroic fight, THE SEER AND THE UNSEEN explores the invisible forces that shape our world and transform our natural landscapes, revealing not only what is worth seeing but what is worth saving.