Black Nights Chief Tiina Lokk Presents Diverse Selection

Competition section includes '28:94 Local Time' and 'The Prosecutor, the Defender, the Father and His Son' (above)

Black Nights Chief Tiina Lokk Presents
Courtesy of Black Nights

The competition line-up of the Black Nights Film Festival in Tallinn, Estonia, features seven world premieres, three international premieres and five European premieres, a total of 18 films from 21 countries.

Festival director Tiina Lokk said: “I’m really pleased with the selection of countries and the genre versatility of the program, having directors at very different stages in their career. What we have is a mix of different ways of storytelling coming from different continents and cultures that are competing with each other, but also having a lot in common in terms of values and messages.”

The diverse set of world premieres sees the return of Armenian director-scriptwriter David Safarian after a 20-year hiatus with “28:94 Local Time,” the story of a family of theater workers during the civil war and electricity crisis in Jerevan in 1992. Meanwhile, Bulgarian director Iglika Triffonova presents “The Prosecutor, the Defender, the Father and His Son,” a courtroom drama based on the real-life trial of Serbian military commander Radislav Krstić.

Other world premieres include Georgian director Vano Burduli’s city tale “The Summer of Frozen Fountains,” Rubén Imaz and Yulene Olaizola’s historical piece “Epitaph” from Mexico, Marian Crisan’s social-realist story “Orizont” from Romania, Asoka Handagama’s love triangle “Let Her Cry” from Sri Lanka, and Laila Pakalnina’s fact-based drama “Dawn,” a Latvia-Estonia co-production.

Making their international premieres are Vitaly Mansky’s North Korea documentary “Under the Sun” (Russia, Germany, Czech Republic, Latvia, North Korea), Paula Ortiz’s Lorca adaptation “The Bride” (Spain), and Aleksandr Kott’s relationship drama “Insight” (Russia). Also competing, receiving their European premieres, are Morteza Farshbaf character study “Avalanche” (Iran), Joost van Ginkel’s ensemble piece “The Paradise Suite” (Netherlands-Sweden-Bulgaria), Tom Lin’s grief-themed drama “Zinnia Flower” (Taiwan), Adil El Arbi and Bilall Fallah’s gang story “Black” (Belgium), and Justin Lerner’s edgy family story “The Automatic Hate” (U.S.).

Franz Müller’s mid-life crisis comedy Happy Hour (Germany), Joon-ik’s “The Throne” period drama (South Korea) and Yermek Tursunov’s neo-western “Stranger” (Kazakhstan) round off the selection.

The 19th Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival will run Nov. 13-29, with the awards ceremony on Nov. 27.

“28:94 Local Time,” David Safarian (Armenia-Netherlands-Germany) World premiere
“Avalanche,” Morteza Farshbaf (Iran) European premiere
“Black,” Adil El Arbi & Bilall Fallah (Belgium) European premiere
“The Bride,” Paula Ortiz (Spain) International premiere
“Dawn,” Laila Pakalnina (Latvia-Estonia) World premiere
“Epitaph,” Yulene Olaizola & Rubén Imaz (Mexico) World premiere
“Happy Hour,” Franz Müller (Germany-Ireland) European premiere
“Insight,” Aleksander Kott (Russia) International premiere
“Let Her Cry,” Asoka Handagama (Sri Lanka) World premiere
“Orizont,” Marian Crisan (Romania) World premiere
“Stranger,” Yermek Tursunov (Kazakhstan) European premiere
“The Automatic Hate,” Justin Lerner (U.S.) European premiere
“The Paradise Suite,” Joost van Ginkel (Netherlands-Sweden-Bulgaria) European premiere
“The Prosecutor, the Defender, the Father and His Son,” Iglika Triffonova (Bulgaria-Sweden-Netherlands) World premiere
The Summer of Frozen Fountains,” Vano Burduli (Georgia-Russia) World premiere
“The Throne,” Lee Joon-ik (South Korea) European premiere
“Under the Sun,” Vitaliy Manskiy (Russia-Germany-North Korea-Czech Republic-Latvia) International premiere
“Zinnia Flower,” Tom Lin (Taiwan) European premiere