Star orchestra conductor Nina (43) works on Mahler's 5th Symphony. Rehearsals are interrupted: her son Lars (12) had an accident. Putting the concert on hold, Nina decides to spend five days alone with Lars. They leave to their summer residence on a remote island. In winter, the island is abandoned. They are stranded with one another and their inability to communicate. Silent observation and misunderstandings make way for suspicion. Was Lars involved in a deadly incident at school? A storm hits the island. Tension culminates in a fierce confrontation. Saved from the storm, Nina and Lars see the trust between them shattered. Nina risks her professional reputation and prolongs their stay. They set out to repair a broken boat. United by the effort, they start to listen to each other. By listening to Lars, Nina finds an intimate bond to Mahler's music. The film explores the interdependence of professional and family life, as well as the nature of trust, and the consequences of its loss.
If my back was up against a wall this very moment and given a choice between my career and the wellbeing of my children, I would not hesitate. I cannot live without my profession, but the bond I share with my children makes me who I am - as a person, as a filmmaker. This brought me to Nina. Her struggle to reset the lost bond with her son plays out on stormy cliffs in the fragile time of childhood passing into adolescence, into adulthood. Nina fights her own fights, recognizes her mistakes and goes back to correct them. We need women like her, fictitious and real. The suspenseful story is set against spectacular landscapes, raw forces of nature, and the power of music and sound. Using these elements, we create a fresh and elegant contemporary arthouse film with subtle elements of a thriller.