Skip to main content

A wide range of German productions and co-productions at Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival


Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival (Pimedate Ööde filmifestival, PÖFF) will be held in its 27th edition from November 3 to 19, 2023. Once again, a comprehensive selection of world cinema from the last two years will be presented to local and international audiences. This time, this includes 41 German productions and co-productions. In addition, the Goethe-Institut Estonia will show film highlights of the year in its own series.

In combination with Industry@Tallinn & Baltic Event and the two sub-festivals Just Film and PÖFF Shorts, the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival, accredited by FIAPF as one of the “A” category festivals, has developed over the years into one of the biggest in Northern Europe. The First Feature Competition section will feature FALLING INTO PLACE (Weydemann Bros.). Aylin Tezel's directorial debut is about Kira and Ian, two thirty-somethings who spontaneously meet one winter weekend and form a surprisingly deep bond. Later, back in everyday life, they struggle to maintain this special relationship.

The Best of Festivals section features eleven German productions and co-productions, including the seven major German films THE TEACHERS‘ LOUNGE ( film) by Ilker Çatak, THE UNIVERSAL THEORY (, The Barricades) by Timm Kroeger, SHOCK (Bon Voyage Films) by Denis Moschitto and Daniel Rakete Siegel, BLIND AT HEART (Lucky Bird Pictures) by Barbara Albert, AFIRE (Schramm Film Koerner & Weber) by Christian Petzold, INGEBORG BACHMANN – JOURNEY INTO THE DESERT (Heimatfilm) by Margarethe von Trotta and TOUCHED (2Pilots Filmproduction GmbH, Soquiet Filmproduktion) by Claudia Rorarius.

Other sections include the German productions DEAR THOMAS (Zeitsprung Pictures) by Andreas Kleinert (Special Screenings), HOLLYWOODGATE (Rolling Narratives) by Ibrahim Nash'at (Doc@PÖFF), PLASTIC FANTASTIC (Trimafilm) by Isa Willinger (Environment Agency Environmental Film Programme) and LIFE IS NOT A COMPETITION, BUT I’M WINNING (Schuldenberg Films) by Julia Fuhr Mann (Estonian Olympic Committee Sports Film Programme).

When it comes to PÖFF Shorts, the following German major productions will be screened: BAIGAL NUUR - LAKE BAIKAL (Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF) by Alisi Telengut (Shorts Animation Competition), PARADISE EUROPE (Cinema Pósgenero) by Leandro Goddinho, Paulo Menezes (Shorts Live Action Competition), THE LAST BAR (Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg) by Arne Hain (Shorts New Talents Competition: Animation), LONG TIME NO SEE (International Film School Cologne) by Kevin Biele and THE BIRTHDAY PARTY (DFFB) by Francesco Sossai (Shorts New Talents Competition: Live Action), MAKE OR BREAK (mobyDOK) by Mike Plitt, Falk Schuster (DOC@Shorts) as well as PUSSY LOVE (Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg) by Linda Krauss, SOMNI (Talking Animals) by Sonja Rohleder, LOVE AT FIRST BYTE (HFF Munich) by Felizitas Hoffmann, Theresa Hoffmann and PLOPP by Carolin Glomp (Shorts Alternative) are represented.

At the 23rd edition of Just Film, the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival's youth and children's film festival, nine German productions and co-productions will be screened this year, including  THE FLYING CLASSROOM (UFA Fiction) by Carolina Hellsgård and WEEKEND REBELS (Wiedemann & Berg Film) by Marc Rothemund in the Children' Competition Program section, WHAT THE FINN?! – SUMMER OF SURPRISES (Lieblingsfilm) by Stefan Westerwelle in the Children's Program section, THE TEACHERS‘ LOUNGE (if... productions film) by Ilker Çatak in the Children's Right Program section, SILVER AND THE BOOK OF DREAMS (Constantin Film) by Helena Hufnagel in the Youth Competition section and DESERT CRITTER by Lina Walde in the Toddler's Screening section.

As every year, the Goethe-Institut in Estonia presents film highlights of the year, this time under the new title “Saksa Kino – German Cinema at Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival”. The selection includes THE TEACHERS‘ LOUNGE by Ilker Çatak, the German candidate for the 96th Oscars® in the “Best International Feature Film” category, as well as Christian Petzolds AFIRE. The novel adaptation BLIND AT HEART by Barbara Alberti and Timm Kröger's THE UNIVERSAL THEORY  as well as TOUCHED by Claudia Rorarius, which received prizes for the best acting performance at Locarno 2023, are also part of the programme. Furthermore, the creative industry desk at the Goethe-Institut Tallinn brings filmmakers from Baltic Sea region to the festival. To make German films more accessible for everyone, Andreas Kleinert's DEAR THOMAS is returning to the festival once again, this time as special screening with audio description for the visually impaired and subtitles for hearing impaired. The film that won the grand prix at the 2021’ edition of the festival in Tallinn.


All German productions and co-productions in Tallinn at a glance:

Official Selection
THE MAN FROM ROME by Jaap van Heusden (NL/DE, Fiction Park)
NATASHAS’S DANCE by Jos Stelling (NL/DE, Fiction)

First Feature Competition
FALLING INTO PLACE by Aylin Tezel (DE/UK, Weydemann Bros.)

Critics Pick’s Competition
LIGHT FALLS by Phedon Papamichael (GE/AL/GR/DE, Pallas Film)

Baltic Film Competition                                                                                            
THE WRITER by Romas Zabarauskas (LI/DE/US, Artysta Management)

HOLLYWOODGATE by Ibrahim Nash’at (DE/US, Rolling Narratives)

Special Screenings
DEAR THOMAS (LIEBER THOMAS) by Andreas Kleinert (Zeitsprung Pictures)             

Best of Festivals
THE TEACHERS' LOUNGE (DAS LEHRERZIMMER) by Ilker Çatak (if… Productions film)           
CRITICAL ZONE BY Ali Ahmadzadeh (IR/DE, Counter Intuitive film)         
BLIND AT HEART (DIE MITTAGSFRAU) by Barbara Albert (DE/LU/CH, Lucky Bird Pictures)
AFIRE (ROTER HIMMEL) by Christian Petzold (Schramm Film Koerner Weber Kaiser)
FALLEN LEAVES by Aki Kaurismäki (FI/DE, Pandora Film)                           
STEPNE by Maryna Vroda (UA/DE/PL/SK, Vrodastudio, Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF, Tandem Production)
TOUCHED by Claudia Rorarius (2Pilot Filmproduction, Soquiet Filmproduktion)
INGEBORG BACHMANN – JOURNEY INTO THE DESERT by Margarethe von Trotta (Heimatfilm)
KIDNAPPED by Marco Bellocchio (IT/FR/DE, Match Factory Productions)
BASTARDEN (THE PROMISED LAND) by Nikolaj Arcel (DK/DE/SE, Zentropa International Berlin)

Midnight Shivers
TIGER STRIPES by Amanda Nell Eu (MY/TW/FR/DE/NL/ID, Weydemann Bros. Filmproduktion)

Environment Agency - Environmental Film Programme
PLASTIC FANTASTIC by Isa Willinger (Trimafilm)

Shorts Animation Competition
BAIGAL NUUR - LAKE BAIKAL by Alisi Telengut (DE/CA, Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF)

Shorts Live Action Competition
PARADISE EUROPE (DU BIST SO WUNDERBAR) by Leandro Goddinho, Paulo Menezes (DE/BR, Cinema Pósgenero)

Shorts New Talents Competition: Animation
THE LAST BAR by Arne Hain (Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg)

Shorts New Talents Competition: Live Action 
LONG TIME NO SEE by Kevin Biele (Internationale Filmschule Köln)

MAKE OR BREAK by Mike Plitt, Falk Schuster (mobyDOK)
MARIUPOL. A HUNDRED NIGHTS by Sofiia Melnyk (UA/DE, Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg)

Shorts Alternative
PUSSY LOVE by Linda Krauss (Filmakademie Baden-Württemberg)
SOMNI by Sonja Rohleder (Talking Animals)
LOVE AT FIRST BYTE by Felizitas Hoffmann, Theresa Hoffmann (HFF München)
PLOPP by Carolin Glomp

JUST - Children’s Competition Programme
WEEKEND REBELS (WOCHENENDREBELLEN) by Marc Rothemund (Wiedemann & Berg Film)

JUST - International Youth Competition Programme

JUST - Juniors Competition Programme
A GREYHOUND OF A GIRL by Enzo d'Alò (LU/IT/IR/UK/LV/EE/DE, Fish Blowing Bubbles)

JUST – Children’s Programme
WHAT THE FINN?! – SUMMER OF SURPRISES (KANNAWONIWASEIN!) by Stefan Westerwelle (Lieblingsfilm)        

JUST - Youth Programme
DORMITORY by Nehir Tuna (TR/DE/FR, Red Balloon Film)          

JUST - Childrens Right’s Programme
THE TEACHERS' LOUNGE (DAS LEHRERZIMMER) by Ilker Çatak (if… Productions film)           

JUST - Estonian Olympic Committee Sports Film Programme
LIFE IS NOT A COMPETITION BUT I’M WINNING by Julia Fuhr Mann (Schuldenberg Films)

JUST – Toddler’s Screening


Sylva Häutle (Head of Festival Relations & Producers Liaison)
Angela Sonntag (Head of Press & Public Relations)