Black Nights announces focus programme

Selection to celebrate country's shared centenary

by Amber Wilkinson

Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival has announced that its focus programme this year will be the 100-year-olds to tie in the fact that Estonia is celebrating its 100th anniversary.

The section will focus on 12 countries that share their centenary this year - Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Ukraine, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia, Romania, Hungary, Georgia, Austria and Iceland.- and feature films made between 1958 and 1977.

Many of the films screening were made in the 1960s as a new wave rose in film and the majority were also made in unfavorable socio-political circumstances. All films will be introduced by archive experts from the respective countries.

The festival says: "One of the emblematic works here is Madness (1969) by the Estonian director Kaljo Kiisk, a modernist film that had anti-totalitarian messages hidden between the lines and had its distribution both inside and outside the Soviet Union severely restricted: while not officially forbidden, the film had several scenes cut and only nine copies were made, which the director could distribute only by personally travelling the country and organising the screenings himself. The film was also given a forbidden screening at the Venice film festival, where it was invited, a first ever for a Soviet Estonian film."

Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival runs from November 16 to December 2 and the full line-up of the section is below:

  • Romania: Life Does Not Forgive (aka When the Mist Rises) / Viața nu iartă, Directors Iulian Mihu & Manole Marcus, 1958
  • Czech Rep (at the time Czechoslovakia): Joseph Kilian / Postava k podpírání, Directors Pavel Juráček & Jan Schmidt, 1963
  • Poland: How to Be Loved / Jak być kochaną, director Wojciech Has, 1963
  • Slovakia (at the time Czechoslovakia): The Barnabáš Kos Case / Prípad Barnabáš Kos, Director Peter Solan, 1964
  • Ukraine: The Shadows of Forgotten Ancestors / Tini zabutykh predkiv, Director Sergei Parajanov, 1964
  • Latvia: Four White Shirts / Četri balti krekli, Director Rolands Kalniņš, 1967
  • Austria: Moss on the Stones / Moos auf den Steinen, Director Georg Lhotsky, 1968
  • Estonia: Madness / “Hullumeelsus”, Director Kaljo Kiisk, 1968
  • Georgia: Pirosmani, Director Giorgi Shengelaia, 1969
  • Hungary: The Witness / A Tanu, Director Péter Bacsó, 1969
  • Lithuania: The Beauty / Gražuolė, Director Arūnas Žebriūnas, 1969
  • Iceland: Murder Story / Morðsaga, director Reynir Oddsson, 1977

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