Jonas Odell's Släkt vänner

FILM buffs should make a note of this year's Tampere Film Festival, which presents an opportunity to see intriguing films that are otherwise practically impossible to catch. The festival was first organised in 1969 and concentrated originally on short films in particular, but it has since expanded to feature all sorts of films except for Hollywood blockbusters.

This year, the festival offers first-hand proof of the high quality of contemporary Romanian cinema, with the festival programme featuring a number of recent Romanian short films. Also presented is the documentary The Autobiography of Nicolae Ceauşescu, which uses archive video material to paint a portrait of the country's late dictator. Several screenings of Chinese documentaries, on the other hand, give a rare glimpse into the Chinese independent film scene and present an insiders' point of view to Chinese society. There's also a series of a bunch of intriguing animations on offer.

Numerous fascinating documentary films stand out from the festival programme. William S. Burroughs: A Man Within is possibly one of the most interesting ones, examining the persona and works of the legendary beat writer. Another definite highlight is the screening of Jean Epstein's silent film La chute de la maison Usher, an adaptation of a story by Edgar Allan Poe, which features live accompaniment by the rock band Radiopuhelimet.

Tampere Film Festival
9 13 March

Teemu Henriksson