Helsinki International Film Festival: Love & Anarchy

17.09.2020, Auditorium

The 33rd Helsinki International Film Festival – Love & Anarchy is organised from September 17th to 27th, 2020

Helsinki International Film Festival: Love & Anarchy

Founded in 1988, the Helsinki International Film Festival – Love & Anarchy has been held annually ever since. The aim of Finland’s biggest film festival is to promote the artistry of filmmaking alongside inventive, controversial and visually stunning new films. The festival also seeks to screen films that would otherwise not be seen in Finnish theatres.

The festival programme consists of new films from well-known filmmakers and fresh talents alike. In its first few years the programme was heavily focused on Japanese and Hong Kong films. Since then, the programme has evolved; Asian films still play a part but films from all other continents feature too. The ideological masters of the festival aren’t too tough to pick out – Lina Wertmüller (Love and Anarchy, 1973), Wong Kar-wai, Spike Lee, Claire Denis, Peter Greenaway, Gaspar Noé, Kelly Reichardt, John Woo, David Cronenberg, Takeshi Kitano, Todd Solondz, Takashi Miike and Hayao Miyazaki are all names that pop up in the festival programme year and decade after another.

During its over 30-year lifespan, the Helsinki International Film Festival has expanded from two theatres to 18 screens and established itself as an 11-day homage to cinema. In 1988 the festival screened 26 films. In 2019, the programme consisted of 159 feature films and 191 short films. In 2018 HIFF launched its R&A Shorts National Competition. The 2019 festival again gathered approx. 60 000 visitors.

Each year HIFF invites important filmmakers to speak about their work and meet both audiences and industry professionals. In past years the festival has had the honour of welcoming guests such as Spike Lee, Danny Boyle, Tilda Swinton, Naoko Ogigami, Jan Kounen, Aleksandr Sokurov, Baz Luhrmann, Philip Ridley, Nicolas Winding Refn, Jacques Audiard, Lucile Hadžihalilović, Terence Davies and Cristian Mungiu.

The festival is organised by the Helsinki International Film Festival – Love & Anarchy association.

The festival is supported by the Finnish Film Foundation, the City of Helsinki and the European Union’s Creative Europe MEDIA programme.


In the wake of the pandemic caused by the COVID-19 virus, the Love & Anarchy Festival is paying special attention to visitor safety. The festival’s biggest priority is the well-being of the visitors, volunteers and staff. The festival follows the recommendations and guidance of the authorities and will update the practices as needed. Read more here.

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