FESTIVAL: The Transilvania International Film Festival


Small Town Killers

Directed by Ole Bornedal

Starring Nicolas Bro, Ulrich Thomsen, Mia Lyhne

Ib and Edward are tired of their lifeless marriages and dream of living the good life from the stash of money they’ve earned moonlighting for years. After a huge fight with their wives, the two men get drunk and hire a Russian contract killer to do a hit on their spouses. But they have badly underestimated their wives, and this becomes the start of an absurd journey where Ib and Edward to their own horror end at the top of a kill list.

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In the Blood

Directed by Rasmus Heisterberg

Starring Kristoffer Bech, Elliott Crossett Hove, Victoria Carmen Sonne

It’s summer in Copenhagen; a time of endless days and carefree nights. Young Simon goes to medical school with his best friend Knud. Together with their friends Soren and Esben the boys party, drink and chase girls and wake up the next day only to do the whole thing all over again. But it is also a time of change between the friends and when everyone, except Simon, decides it’s time to sell their shared apartment, it creates a growing tension within the group. Whilst the others gravitate towards adulthood, Simon is not ready to let go of his airy adolescent life.

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Tom of Finland

Directed by Dome Karukoski

Starring Jakob Oftebro, Jessica Grabowsky, Werner Daehn

Touko Laaksonen, a decorated officer, returns home after a harrowing and heroic experience serving his country in World War II, but life in Finland during peacetime proves equally distressing. He finds Helsinki rampant with the persecution of the homosexual and men around him even being pressured to marry women and have children. Touko finds refuge in his liberating art, specializing in homoerotic drawings of muscular men, free of inhibitions. His work – made famous by his signature ‘Tom of Finland’ – became the emblem of a generation of men and fanned the flames of a gay revolution.

Festival Link

Read our interview with Dome Karukoski


The Oath

Directed by Baltasar Kormákur

Starring Baltasar Kormákur, Hera Hilmar, Gísli Örn Garðarsson

Finnur is a successful heart surgeon. When his daughter, Anna, gets mixed up with a manipulative, drug-dealing boyfriend, his family life begins to unravel. And as the boyfriend’s grip tightens around Anna and the entire family, he feels he is forced to take drastic measures.

Festival Link

Read our interview with Baltasar Kormakur

The Aquatic Effect

Directed by Sólveig Anspach

Starring Florence Loiret-Caille, Didda Jónsdóttir, Samir Guesmi

Samir, a tall, lanky, 40-something crane operator from Montreuil, falls head over heels in love with Agathe, a feisty young woman he sees in a café. He discovers she is a swimming instructor at the local public swimming pool, and, for lack of a better plan, he decides to enlist as her student… although he can swim perfectly. But his lie only lasts for three lessons, and Agathe hates liars. The truth surfaces. Agathe is furious, is this the end?

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Directed by Gudmundur Arnar Gudmundsson

Starring Søren Malling, Baldur Einarsson, Blær Hinriksson

A remote fishing village in Iceland. Teenage boys Thor and Christian experience a turbulent summer as one tries to win the heart of a girl while the other discovers new feelings toward his best friend. When summer ends and the harsh nature of Iceland takes back its rights, it’s time to leave the playground and face adulthood.

Festival Link

Read our interview with Gudmundur Arnar Gudmundsson


Sami Blood

Directed by Amanda Kernell

Starring Lene Cecilia Sparrok, Mia Erika Sparrok, Maj Doris Rimpi

Elle Marja, 14, is a reindeer-breading Sámi girl. Exposed to the racism of the 1930’s and race biology examinations at her boarding school she starts dreaming of another life. To achieve this other life she has to become someone else and break all ties with her family and culture.

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Emma Vestrheim

Emma Vestrheim is the editor-in-chief of Cinema Scandinavia. Originally from Australia, she is now based in Bergen, Norway, and attends major Nordic film festivals to conduct interviews and review new films.