Focus on Finnish cinema in Czech Republic and Spain
by Jorn Rossing Jensen
- Finnish films and filmmakers featured on programmes in Uherske Hradiste, Czech Republic, and Valladolid, Spain
Finnish cinema is in strong demand at European showcases. In focus at the 2015 Uherské Hradiště Summer Film School in the Czech Republic (24 July-1 August), Finland will also be celebrated as this year’s guest country at the Valladolid International Film Festival in Spain (between 24-31 October).
At the 21st edition of the Czech educational, non-competitive showcase, Finnish film expert Olaf Möller is screening a programme of 30 Finnish films ranging from Edvin Laine’s The Unknown Soldier (1955) to Dome Karukoski’s The Grump [+see also:
film profile] (2014). Additionally, Finnish director Mika Kaurismäki is introducing a number of his own films featured in the Summer Film School’s selection.
Spain’s Valladolid International Film Festival has chosen Finland as its guest country for its 60th edition, which will be organised in cooperation with the Finnish Film Foundation (which has subtitled all of the participating Finnish films in Spanish), The Finnish Institute and the Finnish Embassy in Madrid. A book about Finnish cinema will also be published in Spanish.
For the central retrospective, the festival has selected 13 features and documentaries so far. Topping the list is Drifting Clouds (1996), which earned five Jussis– the Finnish national award– for Aki Kaurismäki, who is “considered the best Director in Finnish cinema.” Other entries include Karukoski’s The Grump and Jukka-Pekka Valkeapää’s They Have Escaped [+see also:
interview: J-P Valkeapää
film profile], both of which are from 2014.
“The art of film is very much alive in this small country of five million inhabitants - today Finland boasts a new generation of young directors who continue to achieve growing respect and prestige in the world of celluloid,” explains Valladolid.