Nicolea Krupa

Written by Nicolea Krupa

Modified & Updated: 02 Jun 2024

Sherman Smith

Reviewed by Sherman Smith


Welcome to our fascinating exploration of the movie “Pelle the Conqueror”! This critically acclaimed film, directed by Danish filmmaker Bille August, takes us on a mesmerizing journey through the life of Pelle, a young Swedish boy who emigrates to Denmark with his father in search of a better life. Released in 1987, “Pelle the Conqueror” captivated audiences with its heartfelt storytelling, gripping performances, and stunning cinematography.

In this article, we will delve into 30 intriguing facts about this remarkable movie, shedding light on its production, cast, reception, and impact on the world of cinema. So buckle up and get ready to dive deep into the enchanting world of “Pelle the Conqueror” and discover the secrets behind its enduring popularity and critical acclaim!

Key Takeaways:

  • Pelle the Conqueror” is a Danish-Swedish film that won the Palme d’Or at the 1988 Cannes Film Festival, highlighting the struggles of immigrants and the bond between a father and son.
  • The movie’s success opened doors for Scandinavian cinema, showcasing universal themes of hope, resilience, and the pursuit of a better life, resonating with audiences worldwide.
Table of Contents

Pelle the Conqueror is a Danish-Swedish film released in 1987.

Pelle the Conqueror, directed by Bille August, is a Danish-language film that tells the story of a young boy named Pelle and his father who move from Sweden to Denmark in search of a better life.

The film is based on the novel of the same name by Danish author Martin Andersen Nexø.

The movie adaptation of Pelle the Conqueror stayed true to the emotional depth and social commentary found in the original novel, which was published in 1906.

Pelle the Conqueror won the prestigious Palme d’Or at the 1988 Cannes Film Festival.

This recognition brought international acclaim to the film and solidified its status as a masterpiece of Scandinavian cinema.

The role of Pelle was played by actor Pelle Hvenegaard, who was just 11 years old at the time.

Hvenegaard’s incredible performance earned him critical praise and the award for Best Actor at the Cannes Film Festival.

Pelle the Conqueror received four Academy Award nominations, including Best Director and Best Adapted Screenplay.

This recognition further highlighted the film’s impact and contributed to its widespread popularity.

The movie highlights the struggles of immigrants and the challenges they face in a new country.

Pelle and his father encounter discrimination, poverty, and harsh working conditions as they try to build a better life in Denmark.

The stunning cinematography captures the beautiful landscapes of both Sweden and Denmark.

The visually striking scenes enhance the storytelling and immerse the audience in the world of Pelle the Conqueror.

The film is a poignant exploration of the bond between a father and son.

Pelle’s relationship with his father, played by actor Max von Sydow, is a central theme that resonates with viewers on an emotional level.

Pelle the Conqueror sheds light on the social injustices and class inequalities of the time.

Through its compelling narrative, the movie prompts reflection on the struggles faced by the working class and the need for empathy and understanding.

The film’s screenplay eloquently addresses themes of hope, resilience, and the pursuit of a better life.

It serves as a powerful reminder that even in the face of adversity, the human spirit can triumph.

Pelle the Conqueror has been hailed as one of the greatest films ever made in Scandinavian cinema.

Its impact on the industry and its unforgettable storytelling have cemented its place in cinematic history.

The movie’s score, composed by Stefan Nilsson, adds depth and emotion to the storytelling.

The hauntingly beautiful music enhances the viewing experience and adds another layer of artistry to the film.

Pelle the Conqueror showcases the talent and versatility of its director, Bille August.

August’s skillful direction brings the story to life and captures the nuances of the characters with precision.

The film’s success led to increased international recognition for Danish cinema.

Pelle the Conqueror opened doors for other Danish films to be seen and appreciated on a global scale.

Pelle the Conqueror explores the universal themes of longing for a better life and the search for one’s true identity.

These themes resonate with audiences regardless of their cultural background.

The movie immerses viewers into the harsh realities of the 19th-century working class in Scandinavia.

It offers valuable insights into historical contexts and social dynamics during that time period.

Pelle the Conqueror features stunning performances from its supporting cast, bringing depth and authenticity to the story.

Each actor contributes to the overall impact of the film through their nuanced portrayals of their respective characters.

The film’s narrative is driven by a series of poignant moments that stay with the audience long after the credits roll.

These moments leave a lasting impression and contribute to the emotional resonance of the film.

Pelle the Conqueror serves as a reminder of the power of storytelling as a means of exploration and understanding.

It prompts introspection and fosters empathy by shining a light on the struggles faced by individuals and communities.

The success of Pelle the Conqueror paved the way for more international collaborations in Scandinavian cinema.

It showcased the rich storytelling traditions and talent present in the region.

The film’s historical context provides a glimpse into the socio-political climate of the time.

It serves as a valuable educational tool for understanding the challenges and triumphs experienced by the working class.

Pelle the Conqueror continues to inspire filmmakers and audiences around the world with its timeless message.

Its impact extends beyond its initial release, making it a classic in the realm of international cinema.

The movie’s title, “Pelle the Conqueror,” reflects the indomitable spirit and determination of the protagonist.

Pelle’s resilience and ability to overcome adversity serves as an inspiration to viewers.

Pelle the Conqueror draws attention to the power dynamics and hierarchies that exist within societies.

It raises important questions about social justice and the need to address inequalities.

The film’s 1988 Palme d’Or win placed Pelle the Conqueror on the global cinematic stage.

It solidified its position as a must-watch film for cinephiles around the world.

Pelle the Conqueror’s critical success opened doors for more Scandinavian films to gain international recognition.

It helped pave the way for the emergence of new talents and diverse narratives from the region.

The movie’s evocative imagery and sensitive storytelling leave a lasting impact on viewers.

It resonates with the audience on an emotional level and prompts reflection on the human condition.

Pelle the Conqueror showcases the artistic achievements of the Danish and Swedish film industries.

Its collaborative nature highlights the strength and potential of cross-cultural storytelling.

The film’s success at the box office demonstrates the universal appeal of its themes and storytelling.

It resonated with audiences worldwide and garnered widespread acclaim.

Pelle the Conqueror stands as a testament to the power of cinema to convey profound human experiences.

Its impact continues to be felt, making it a true gem of Scandinavian cinema.


In conclusion, Pelle the Conqueror is a captivating and critically acclaimed film that showcases the journey of a young boy named Pelle and his father as they navigate through the challenges of immigrating to Denmark. With its powerful storytelling, brilliant performances, and thought-provoking themes of resilience, family, and social inequality, this movie has made a lasting impact on both critics and audiences alike. Pelle the Conqueror stands as a testament to the strength of the human spirit and the power of cinema to inspire and connect people from different walks of life.


1. What is the plot of Pelle the Conqueror?

Answer: Pelle the Conqueror follows the story of a young boy named Pelle and his father, Lasse, as they emigrate from Sweden to Denmark. They both face numerous challenges and hardships while finding work and attempting to build a better life for themselves.

2. Who directed Pelle the Conqueror?

Answer: Pelle the Conqueror was directed by Danish filmmaker Bille August.

3. Was Pelle the Conqueror successful?

Answer: Yes, Pelle the Conqueror was widely successful and acclaimed. It won the Palme d’Or at the 1988 Cannes Film Festival and also received the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film in 1989.

4. Who starred in Pelle the Conqueror?

Answer: The film features memorable performances by actors Max von Sydow as Lasse and Pelle Hvenegaard as Pelle.

5. What are the main themes explored in Pelle the Conqueror?

Answer: Pelle the Conqueror delves into themes such as immigration, social inequality, resilience, and family bonds.

6. Is Pelle the Conqueror based on a true story?

Answer: No, Pelle the Conqueror is not based on a true story. However, it is inspired by the novel “Pelle Erobreren” written by Danish author Martin Andersen Nexø.

7. Where was Pelle the Conqueror filmed?

Answer: The movie was primarily filmed on the Danish island of Bornholm.

8. Can I watch Pelle the Conqueror online?

Answer: Yes, Pelle the Conqueror is available for streaming on various online platforms or can be purchased on DVD or Blu-ray.

Was this page helpful?

Our commitment to delivering trustworthy and engaging content is at the heart of what we do. Each fact on our site is contributed by real users like you, bringing a wealth of diverse insights and information. To ensure the highest standards of accuracy and reliability, our dedicated editors meticulously review each submission. This process guarantees that the facts we share are not only fascinating but also credible. Trust in our commitment to quality and authenticity as you explore and learn with us.