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The Canadian Film Institute (CFI) and the Embassies of the Baltic and Nordic Nations in Ottawa are proud to present the 8th annual Bright Nights Baltic-Nordic Film Festival (BNFF). Media Release (02/20/2018) Ottawa, ON - Screenings will take place from March 9-18 at Arts Court Theatre (2 Daly Ave). Bright Nights features an eclectic mix of dark, edgy, and thought-provoking films from the eight Baltic-Nordic countries: Estonia, Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden. All films are Ottawa premieres.

The Festival kicks off with a one-of-a-kind launch party on Thursday, March 8th at Arts Court and features food and drink samples courtesy of the host embassies and IKEA. Highlights of the evening will include a rare screening of Ingmar Bergman's Karin's Face, the legendary filmmaker's touching tribute to his mother, and Diagonal-Symphonie, the seminal abstract film by Swedish avant-garde artist and filmmaker Viking Eggeling. There will also be VR experiences and selections of Baltic-Nordic music curated by DJ Candace (presented by CKCU FM 93.1) so don't miss out! Doors open at 7:00PM.

On March 9th, BNFF opens with Swedish selection Eternal Summer, a romantic drama about a young man and woman whose cross-country road trip results in some less than lawful experiences.

This year's films cover a wide array of genres, scope, and topics, from gritty documentary Rodeo: Taming a Wild Country-the Estonian selection that examines post-independence from the Soviet Union and Europe's youngest Prime Minister Mart Laar-to Iceland's Heartstone, a coming-of-age story about two 14-year-old boys who must face down the oppressive atmosphere of their small fishing village after one of them realizes his feelings for the other go beyond mere friendship.

Many of the films have received awards recognition as well: The Chronicles of Melanie-a historical drama about one woman's struggles in a labour camp during WWII and the Soviet occupation of Latvia-was Latvia's submission for Best Foreign Language Film at the 90th Academy Awards and claimed the award for Best Cinematography at the 2016 Talinn Black Nights Film Festival; Denmark's Key House Mirror, the story of an elderly woman struggling with memory loss who finds love unexpectedly, won two 2016 Bodil Awards for Best Supporting Actress (Trine Pallesen) and Best Cinematography; and Miami, the Finnish crime thriller about two very different sisters who share a dark past, has been nominated for several categories for the 2018 Junni awards, including two best actress nominations.

Also featured are Lithuania's Together For Ever, a family drama about estrangement and one mother's fight to keep her family together, and Norwegian comedy Staying Alive, the story of one woman whose typical life is upended when she finds out about her husband's adultery.

"Our Bright Nights: Baltic-Nordic Film Festival is somehow already eight years old, and an increasingly popular addition to the CFI's slate of international film festivals here in the National Capital," says CFI Executive Director Tom McSorley. "This year, we are thrilled to hold the entire Festival in the Arts Court Theatre, right downtown. The eighth annual Baltic-Nordic Film Festival is filled with diverse and different films that will provoke, amuse, and entertain. Each edition just gets better and better!"

Admission is $13 for the general public and $9 for CFI members and seniors. Film buffs can purchase a full festival pass for $50-that's two free films! Tickets and passes are available on the official website at CFI-ICF.CA/BNFF, or can be purchased at the door starting 30 minutes before screening time. You can also check out the link for film details, venue and parking information.

The Canadian Film Institute (CFI) was incorporated in 1935 as a federally-chartered, nongovernmental, non-profit cultural organization. It is the oldest film institution in Canada and the second oldest film institute in the world. More information can be found online at CFI-ICF.CA.


The full film list and schedule is as follows:

Eternal Summer


March 9, 7:00PM

Together For Ever


March 10, 4:00PM



March 10, 7:00PM

Key House Mirror


March 11, 4:00PM

The Chronicles of Melanie


March 16, 7:00PM

Rodeo: Taming a Wild Country


March 17, 4:00PM



March 17, 7:00PM

Staying Alive


March 18, 4:00PM

For more information or press materials please contact John Piekoszewski, CFI Media Assistant, by email ( or phone (613-232-6727).


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