11-09-2020

RIGA IFF Announces Films in Festival's Main Competition

This autumn, the seventh Riga International Film Festival will take place 15 – 25 October. One of the most important sections of the festival is the feature film competition. Eight distinct, innovative and artistically challenging films from the Baltic Sea region and the Nordic countries have been selected for the competition this year. Films could be submitted without genre restrictions.

The works included in the feature film competition will be judged by an international jury of film professionals – Dmitry Gluscevskij, European Film Forum SCANORAMA, Sophie Mirouze (La Rochelle IFF), Marge Liiske (Industry@Tallinn &; Baltic Event/POFF), critically acclaimed film director Laila Pakalniņa, and Teo Tsappos (Swedish Film Institute).

The winner of the competition will receive the main prize at RIGA IFF – a bronze figurine of a rooster created in collaboration with artist Ervins Broks. It consists of eight parts, which the director of the winning film can hand out to the film’s crew. The winner of the competition also receives a cash prize of 2,000 euros.

Sonora Broka, the festival’s Creative Director, explains that "cinema is a mirror-like medium. It is the most reflective of the arts, showing us echoes of the world as it is now. In this set of eight films, the mirror images have acquired another expressive layer of meaning – the auteur’s vision. This vision, although different in each film, reaffirms the need for cinema that represents a space for free thought and artistic expression.”

Viewers will only have the opportunity to enjoy the feature competition in person. Both films about brilliant personalities from cinema history, such as Andrey Tarkovsky junior’s film Andrey Tarkovsky. A Cinema Prayer, as well as exceptional directorial debuts, such as Jurģis Matulevičius' film Isaac and Eva Marie Rødbro’s I Love You I Miss You I Hope I See You Before I Die, which premiered at IDFA. Other highly anticipated films that have screened at major international film festivals include – The Trouble with Nature, that screened in the Bright Future competition at the Rotterdam Film Festival, In Deep Sleep, that was included in the Berlinale Forum, and Conference by Ivan I. Tverdovsky (known to Riga IFF viewers for Zoology, 2016), which is currently screening in the Venice Film Festival. Daniel Borgman, whose film Loving Pia competed in this competition in 2017, has also returned with the film Resin.

It is especially noteworthy that the long-awaited film What Silent Gerda Knows will have its national premiere in competition this year.

Feature competition films: 

  • The Trouble With Nature, dir: Illum Jacobi, 2020, Denmark
  • In Deep Sleep, dir: Maria Ignatenko, 2020, Russia
  • Isaac (Izaokas), dir: Jurģis Matulevičius, 2019, Lithuania
  • Resin (Harpiks), dir: Daniel Borgman, 2019, Denmark
  • The Conference (Konferentsiya), dir: Ivan I. Tverdovsky, 2020, Russia, Estonia, UK, Italy
  • What Silent Gerda Knows (Ko zina Klusā Gerda), dir: Yevgeni Pashkevich, 2020, Latvia
  • I Love You I Miss You I Hope I See You Before I Die, dir: Eva Marie Rødbro, 2019, Denmark
  • Andrey Tarkovsky. A Cinema Prayer, dir: Andrey A. Tarkovsky, 2019, Italy, Russia, Sweden

This year, the festival will take place over 11 days, from October 15 to 25. The festival’s motto "Owning the Unknown" is a response to the current epidemiological situation in the world and the challenges this poses. The festival will take place both in person and online this year.

In total, 129 films make up this year's festival programme and are divided into ten thematic sections. In addition to these, the festival is comprised of a Baltic music video competition and a series of events dedicated to discussing relevant industry issues and the latest film technologies.

The full RIGA IFF programme will be announced on Tuesday, 15 September, and tickets to the cinema as well as for the online screenings will go on sale the same day.

Further information about the festival programme and events can be found on the festival’s website, rigaiff.lv.

RIGA IFF is organised with the support of the State Culture Capital Foundation of Latvia, the European Commission’s Creative Europe MEDIA programme, the National Film Centre and Riga City Council.

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Last modified on 18-09-2020