< < Arctic Open 2020 Announces Film Lineup and Premieres From Four Countries>>

Arctic Countries Film Festival ARCTIC OPEN 2020 is proud to present its lineup of features, animated films and documentaries, a total of 24, from Russia, Denmark, Canada and Sweden. The quarantine, the lockdown and the closed borders did affect our program but hasn’t stopped us from bringing the art of cinematic storytelling to your homes.

Observing all sanitary restrictions, Arctic Open IFF will span December 4 to 6 and invites northerners to follows its premiers, retrospectives and thematic programs. We’ll have Russian film directors with us in Arkhangelsk and international ones online.   

In addition to our traditional venues – Mirage Cinema in Titan Arena Mall (20 Voskresenskaya Street) – screenings will be held also in Lomonosov Palace of Culture, TSUM Cinema (Severodvinsk) and, for the first time, the outdoor Arctic Open-Air Cinema in Petrovsky Park.  

This year’s program features full-length films, shorts, documentaries, workshops, meet-the-artist sessions and Q&As with film directors, actors and producers, including the online ones with some of the most renowned independent filmmakers – Andrey Khrzhanovsky, Ivan Vyrypaev, Guy Maddin. 

Admission to cinemas (except for TSUM Cinema) is free. Please register on Arctic Open’s website before you go to see the films as there is 50% occupancy limit. Follows us on social media and our website to stay updated on the registration opening time. 

Selecting films for this year’s non-competition program were Angelika Dolinina, Arctic Open Programmer, and Alexey Medvedev, film critic and curator of the international program.  

“Search for a new reality and connecting the unconnectible –  this is how I would define the theme of this year’s selection. It’s prompted by the plots and issues raised, and also by the very format and the genres the films are styled in. The mix of diverse themes and techniques to unfold them, the synthesis of arts and forms of reaching out to the audience – that’s what Arctic Open-2020 program is about. We’ll have Ivan Vyrypaev presenting his concept of theatrical productions for Internet platforms, and the team of YouTube-streamed documentary film project #ещёнепознер. This “connecting the unconnectible” theme is prompted by the films themselves – The Scarecrow by Dmitry Davydov, which won Grand Prix from Kinotavr and follows a hermit healer who is despised by people while being their only chance for salvation; Lyubov Borisova’s Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me is about how people from completely different backgrounds come together on a desolate island to become each other’s family; Ivan Vyrypaev’s Salvation follows a nun who finds herself in the big world amid the unfamiliar cultures, and his premiere film UFO (theater+cinema) amalgamates the images from real world to explain the metaphysics of emotions. Guy Maddin’s unique and provocative style combines the underground with the techniques of black-and-white silent films. Legendary cartoonist Andrey Khrzhanovsky and his skillful fusion of animation, live action and documentary film techniques. And that’s not all. We’ve got quite a mix to amuse and delight our audiences with,” said Arctic Open programmer Angelika Dolinina.  

A total of 11 films for different age groups will premiere at Arctic Open 2020. The retrospective of Andrey Khrzhanovsky’s legendary animated movies features his recently released The Nose Or Conspiracy of Mavericks, dedicated to pioneers of art and artists who were ahead of their time, which won the jury prize at the Annecy International Animation Film Festival (France), colloquially known as the ‘Cannes of Animation’, past summer. Co-hosting the Q&A with Andrey Khrzhanovsky in Arkhangelsk will be Varya Yakovleva, a cartoon artist from his SHAR School & Studio.

Yakut cinematographers, now traditional participants of Arctic Open, will be presenting two feature films, The Scarecrow and Don’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me. Join us for Q&As with their makers. One more film set beyond the Arctic Circle is Mila Kudryashova’s My Personal Dragon, a documentary combining myths and science in a story of a research team’s search for Arctic dinosaurs.  

Among the highlights of this year’s international selection is I Am Greta, a film by Sweden’s Nathan Grossman about the teenage years of Greta Thumberg who rose to prominence after her ‘one-person school strike for climate action.   

The theme of ecology is reflected also in Phie Ambo’s Rediscovery (Denmark), which follows a group of children who are given free rein on an abandoned construction site in Copenhagen to discover what nature has to teach them and create an ideal world of their own. The film will be presented by Henriette Borg Reinholdt, Director of The Danish Cultural Institute in St. Petersburg. I Am Greta and Rediscovery are both Russian premieres.  

A new film, Leshukonia. The Elusive Beauty, shot by Arkhangelsk-based filmmakers, follows an expedition to a unique corner of the wild — the pristine Leshukonye taiga — and will be presented at the festival by the World Wildlife Fund’s Office in Arkhangelsk.  

The Canadian part of the program is kindly supported by the Embassy of Canada to Russia and includes Anne at 13,000 FT, directed by Kazik Radvansky and following a young woman whose life is completely changed after her skydiving experience. 

The mini-retrospective of Guy Maddin’s films will give us a glimpse of his mysterious universe. Maddin styles his films in the manner of silent and early sound films. In his film Archangel (1990) the story revolves around the city of…. Arkhangelsk.   

Join us for the online meeting with Guy Maddin on December 5 after the screening to learn more about his works.  

The year 2020 was marked by celebration in Russia of the 80th anniversary of poet Joseph Brodsky, whose poem “Don’t leave the room” took on a new meaning this year. Arctic Open features two films dedicated to Brodsky – In A Room And A Half Or Sentimental Journey Home and One And Half Of A Cat, directed by Andrey Khrzhanovsky. The online Q&A with Andrey Khrzhanovsky is scheduled for December 6. The village of Norinskaya in Arkhangelsk’s Konosha municipality was where Brodsky, the future Nobel laureate, spent 18 months in exile.    

During the festival days in Arkhangelsk, we’ll see Brodsky “in the flesh”, embodied by Grigory Dityatkovsky, actor, stage director and educator who plays the lead in Khrzhanovsky’s In A Room And A Half Or Sentimental Journey Home.    

Actor and director Ivan Vyrypaev will unfortunately not be able to present his works personally, but we’ll have him with us on December 4 for an online Q&A to follow after the screening of his two films, Salvation and UFO, the latter being the Russian premiere. As part of his Cinema+Theater project, Vyrypaev will be hosting a three-day workshop titled “Theater Online & Offline” (December 5-7) for stage directors in 15 Russian cities from Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky to Sevastopol.   

Another highlight of this year’s selection is You Are From The Future, a web series of five futuristic episodes showcasing what awaits us in the future. The future we’ve already entered. The relationships without relationships. The ecosystems to consume us. Life like one big game. This web project will be presented by its authors – Valeria Saraykina, Yulia Bobkova and MovieStar producer Dmitry Yakunin.  

Don’t miss the films on our selection of KenoVISION award winning shorts, made by beginner crews during their one-week stay at Kenozero National Park in the summer of 2020. The screening starts on December 4 at 7 p.m. at the Arctic Open-Air Cinema in Petrovsky Park. Other ‘Arctic’ films to be screened at this venue include Boris Dvorkin’s documentary Tikhaya Bay about the creation of the world’s northernmost museum, and    

#ещёнепознер creator Nikolay Solodnikov’s documentary Winter Through, which will be presented in Arkhangelsk by its director Alexandra Kretsan and producer Yegor Kretsan

There is one more theme Arctic Open 2020 will be discussing with professionals and that is prospects of cinematography in Northern Russia.   

For full program please go to ARCTIC OPEN website: https://arctic-open.com/calendar/  

Read more about the films on  https://arctic-open.com/programs/  

Feel free to contact us at 8 (8182) 420807 (CALL CENTER) if you have questions about the schedule, tickets or Q&As.   

We kindly would like to remind you that prior online registration is required on Arctic Open website. Don’t forget your mask.   


Arctic Open IFF is the project run by BEREGINYA Pomor Culture Foundation with the support from Arkhangelsk Ministry of Culture and in cooperation with the Northern (Arctic) Federal University.  

Follows us on: 

Arctic Open webpage: https://www.arctic-open.com/   

VKontakte: https://vk.com/arctic_open_kinofest  

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/arcticopenfest/?ref=bookmarks 



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