In 1973, five men and six women drifted across the Atlantic on a raft as part of a scientific experiment studying the sociology of violence, aggression and sexual attraction in human behavior. Although the project became known in the press as ‘The Sex Raft’, nobody expected what ultimately took place on that three month journey. Through extraordinary archive material and a reunion of the surviving members of the expedition on a full scale replica of the raft, this film tells the hidden story behind what has been described as ’one of the strangest group experiments of all time.’

The Raft is a documentary feature film that premiered at CPH:DOX film festival in 2018, where it picked up the main award for best international documentary film. The film secured several distribution deals with theatrical releases in France (Urban Distribution), Sweden (Folkets Bio), Denmark (DoxBio), Switzerland (Xenix), Mexico/Colombia (Cinetonalá), the UK (Modern Films) and the US (Metrograph Pictures). It has, so far, screened in over 50 film festivals. Among them festivals like IDFA, BFI London, Zürich, Melbourne, Sao Paolo, Moscow and Full Frame Documentary Film Festival. The film won the Prix Europa for Best European TV Documentary 2019 and the Silver Hugo Award at the Chicago International Film Festival, among other awards.

The Raft became a New York Times Critic's Pick and was broadcasted on BBC Storyville.

A book with Marcus Lindeen’s work diary from the production called “Iscensatta samtal” (Staged Conversations) was published in Swedish in 2024.


LENGTH 97 min
FORMAT DCP – 2K, 2:39 Scope, Color
LANGUAGE English, French, Japanese, Swedish, German and Spanish

PRODUCER Erik Gandini, Fasad
CO-PRODUCERS Vibeke Vogel, Bullitt Film, Ingmar Trost, Sutor Kolonko
EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS Jesper Kurlandsky, Fasad, Julie Goldman and Christopeher Clements, Motto Pictures
PRINCIPAL CAST Maria Björnstam, Daniel Giménez Cacho, Servane Zanotti, Rachida Lièvre, Eisuke Yamaki, Fé Seymour, Mary Gidley and Edna Reves.
EDITING Dominika Daubenbüchel, Alexandra Strauss
Måns Månsson
Hans Appelqvist
SOUND Hans Møller

WORLD SALES Urban Distribution


DOX:AWARD - Grand Jury Award at CPH:DOX, 2018
Prix Europa for Best TV Documentary 2019
Grand Ecran Prix - Pariscience Film Festival, 2018
Silver Hugo Award for Best Documentary at Chicago Film Festival, 2018
Best Documentary Director, River Run International Film Festival, 2019
Student Jury Award - Academia Film Olomouc, International Festival of Science Documentary Films, 2019


CPH:DOX, Copenhagen - Main Competition (Winner)
IDFA, Amsterdam - Best of Fests
BFI London Film Festival - Documentary Competition
Zürich Film Festival - Documentray Competition
Moscow International Film Festival
Melbourne Film Festival
Chicago Film Festival (Winner Silver Hugo Award - Best Documentary)
São Paolo Film Festival - New Directors Competition
DocLisboa, Lisbon
FICUNAM Film Festival, Mexico
Helsinki Love & Anarchy International Film Festival
Athens Film Festival (Honorary Mention)
Pariscience Film Festival, France (Winner Grand Ecran Prix)
Bergen Film Festival
River Run International Film Festival, US (Winner Best Documentary Director)
Antenna Documentary Film Festival, Australia
DokuFest Kosovo (Opening film)
Beldocs, Belgrade, Serbia
ZagrebDox, Croatia - Main Competition
Nordisk Panorama - Documentary Competition
Nordic Film Days Lübeck, Germany
Febiofest Prague Film Festival
Docs Against Gravity, Warzaw
Seoul Eco Film Festival, Korea
Transilvania Film Festival, Romania
International Festival of Science Documentary Films, Czech Republic (Winner of Student Jury Award)
DOK.fest München, Germany - Best of fests
Wisconsin Film Festival, US
INDIEBO-Festival De Cine Independiente de Bogotá, Colombia
Kaunas Film Festival
Haifa Film Festival, Israel
Doc Aviv, Israel


”A mind-blowing nonfiction adventure”
Los Angeles Times

"It is an extraordinary story, beautifully and vividly told in Lindeen’s film"
The Guardian

”Sensitive and spellbinding - 'The Raft,' like the people aboard it, floats along the surface of a vast ocean of mystery and memory. The result is a bizarre, captivating, and borderline unbelievable memory play”

"Swedish filmmaker Marcus Lindeen’s engaging documentary effectively delves into the intriguing subject matter, delivering an engrossing exploration of human dynamics that still resonate today."

"The surprisingly short leap from radical academic study to lurid exploitation is navigated with wit, sensitivity and rueful social awareness in Swedish director Marcus Lindeen’s gripping debut feature ' The Raft'.”


︎ Download press kit as PDF

︎ Interview in Filmmaker Magazine
︎ Interview in The Guardian
︎ Marcus Lindeen writes about The Raft for Talkhouse

︎ Interview on WNYC Radio

︎ Interview in Swedish film magazine FLM (Swedish)
︎ Interview in Swedish magazine Filter (Swedish)

Below, an image from the reconstruction of the scenography at Centre Pompidou in Paris where it was made into an interactive art installation in 2017. The installation was later exhibited at Kunsthal Charlottenborg in Copenhagen, Denmark.


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