Festival News 2008 - Tampereen 38. elokuvajuhlien verkkolehti

Festival Guide for Newbies

Anna Pajunen, text and picture
Tatu Henttonen, translation

A first timer to Tampere Film Festival? Or just generally confused? No need to worry! By following these tips you will blend in with the festival veterans and filmmakers gathered together from all over the world.

1. The people of Tampere speak fluent English. However, knowing a couple of words in Finnish doesn't hurt. You might want to greet people with the easygoing greeting "moro!" (with a trilling "r") and if you really want to show your appreciation of the local dialect, just end every sentence with "nääs" (as in "Naaashville").

2. Note that there are many types of short films presented: fiction, experimental films, animated films, documentaries, just to name a few. Some of them might even merge several genres together. So don't take a mockumentary for a real documentary!

  • A beret and a baguette. If you like French film classics, don't be shy to show it. A baguette as a prop comes in handy when hunger strikes.
  • The veteran's secret weapon: a programme sheet and a light pen. You can mark your favourites during the screening, too. The booklet lists details on the production of the film among other information.
  • Practical clothing. Some theatres might lack proper ventilation, while some might make you long for your winter cap.
  • Chocolate. Veterans do not rustle popcorn bags or lolly wrappers during screenings.
  • Festival News. The tabloid offers some shelter from the rain.
  • Smart transportation. The best seats go fast.

3. The festival in question is all about short films. Unlike in screenings for feature films, you are not supposed to storm out of the theatre right after the first film has ended. There are going to be more of them! However, it might be wise to keep an eye on the audience. If they leave in the middle, you have come across a bad screening. In that case, put a resentful expression on your face, snort and just follow the crowd.

4. A long night spent on analysing films may tire you out. To avoid exhaustion, remember to fuel your body with enough food and drink. Veterans count on energy bars, chocolate and coffee. Indeed, a coffeehouse is an excellent place to showcase your expertise on films. However, don't overdo the coffee so that you won't dehydrate critically just in the middle of a screening.

5. "Thirty-five" doesn't stand for the length of the film or the age of the director. It means that the movie is shot on a 35 mm film. Other film gauges include an 8 mm and a 16 mm film. Videotape copies are not shown on VHS tape but on DigiBeta.

6. Missing sound or poor picture quality does not indicate a technical fault - they are signs of great art!

These tips were provided by Kari Lounela, Acting Executive Director.

Updated 14 March 2008 14:31