Today at Black Nights: from the streets of Valparaíso to the haunting Belgian forrest.

Yesterday the 23rd edition of Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival kicked off in Alexela concert hall with a multi-layered opening ceremony in which fiction and fact intertwined. Opening speeches were craftily edited into a theatre play which was being filmed, or was it a film about a theatre play? One way or another, it is a forebode for the next two weeks wherein the film program in Tallinn will reach across genres, countries, ages, and formats.

On this first official day of the festival, we suggest you indulge in some drama, experience how to counter the fake narratives of social media with a more poetic one, wander through the streets of Valparaíso and dance off your midnight shivers at one of our festival clubs!


18:00 Mindanao, Artis Cinema 2
On a big and mountainous island in Southern Philippines, we are witness to the fates of Saima, her husband Malang – who works away from home in a conflict zone – and their sick child. The bed-time story that Saima and Malang tell their kid, of two brave brothers fighting a dragon, comes alive as animated parts in the film.

An emotional, difficult but also uplifting film by award-winning director Brillante Mendoza.

20:30 American Mirror: Intimations of Immortality, Apollo Solaris Cinema 2
With every carefully chosen image or word that we post online, we distance ourselves from our simple truths. And more and more, we seem to need an antidote to the virtual personality we create.

In this documentary film, about the artist Tigran Tsitoghdzyan, and starring Susan Sarandon, the director aims to re-create a set of sense memories of an artist in a non-linear, challenging, yet intriguing story-telling scheme.

21:15 Adoration, Apollo Solaris Cinema 4
Belgian director Fabrice du Welz’s new film takes us to the wild heart of the Low Countries; the Ardennes. A perfect setting for a story on a subject as savage as the dark forest: reckless young love.

Teenage Paul lives with his mother at a mental institution, where she works as a psychologist. Forming a close bond with Gloria, an outpatient at the facility, the two youngsters flee into the woods. With outstanding performances by young talents Thomas Gioria (“Custody”) and Fantine Harduin (“Happy Ending”).

21:30 Ema, Apollo Solaris Cinema 3
The reggaeton rhythms on the streets of Valparaíso bring Ema liberation from her personal life, which – to say the least – is not going very smoothly. A son that set fire to their home, severely injuring her sister, and a romantic relationship that’s on the rocks.

Ema embarks on a wild odyssey through the city in search of total liberation – perhaps even the beginning of a new life.  A drama about guilt and freedom. Told with humor, tragedy, and eroticism by Chilean master director Pablo Larraín.

21:30 The Lodge, Coca-Cola Plaza Cinema 7
Devoted to their devastated mother, siblings Aidan and Mia resent Grace, the younger woman their newly separated father plans to marry. When they, then, become trapped in a winter holiday home together with her, you know you are in for some fright!

This claustrophobic film about psychological demons and family ties, by Severin Fiala and Veronika Franz, is visceral and stylish from the first shot.

Finish your Black Night at one of our cozy festival clubs or bars
From jazz to electronic scapes, or do you rather fancy a good conversation over cocktails at a hotel lobby? There’s a Black Night Bar for everyone: https://poff.ee/en/night-zone/

See the full film schedule
Image from ‘Adoration’.

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