Press Release Arctic Film Festival 2024 (EN)

The Arctic Film Festival 2024 returns for its annual date on 12-13 April 2024 in Longyearbyen, Svalbard. Taking place in two different cinema halls for the first time, the Festival will kick off at the Nordover and will set its big screen at the Longyearbyen Kulturhus on the second day, screening 15 independent films.

With a multifaceted programme that blends feature and short films of various genres and different themes, the AFF addresses local and global environmental issues, brings different realities to the big screen and engages the audience with worlds that seem far, yet are very close.

The Festival opens with the themed programme “Environmental Focus: The Arctic & Beyond”. Seven short films comprise this section which is focused on the fauna and flora of the Arctic and other places, the environmental destruction and its impact on the planet. From ocean experts’ statements on ocean warming and climate change ( Disappearing Jewels”, Dir. Will Kim) to the brutality of systemic labour abuses in the Chinese fishing industry (Squid Fleet, Dir. Ed Ou, Will N. Miller) and two female explorers’ expedition on tracking the progress of a young polar bear mom (Violet: A Polar Bear Story, Dir. Raymond Friesen), the first screening slot aims to open dialogues on environmental issues.

On the second screening slot, we are transferred to places that not many have been to and we are invited to explore “Isolated Realities”. ‘Purga’ by Gintarė Valevičiūtė Brazauskienė and Antanas Skučas depicts experiences based on the unfaded memories of those who survived on the uninhabited island of Trofimovsk in the Laptev Sea while Damien Faure’s post-apocalyptic sci-fi film ‘Pyramiden’ takes us to the abandoned coal mining settlement on the island of Spitsbergen.

Dedicated to “Human Intricacies” and personal challenges, the Festival’s second day starts with the feature fiction film ‘A Letter from Helga’, (dir. Ása Helga Hjörleifsdóttir), a romantic drama set on a remote fjord in 1940’s Iceland. The ‘Short Film’ section consists of 5 short films that explore the human condition through unexpected friendships, daily life events, moral crises and obsessions, in sometimes comedic, other times dramatic and always imaginative ways.

Once again, we are honoured and humbled by the amount of submissions we received. We couldn’t be more thankful for the thought-provoking films that comprise this year’s film selection and we can’t wait to share them with the amazing audience of the Longyearbyen.

Press and Communications Officer Aliki Seferou email: [email protected]

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