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A cultural exchange

Rakesh Kumar |

Films are the best way to introduce culture. This was evident at the recently concluded Nordic-Baltic Youth Film Festival in Delhi. Organised for the first time in India by Nordic and Baltic embassies in Delhi, in collaboration with the India Habitat Centre, the film festival witnessed some of the finest films from these countries.  Through this film festival, embassies of the Nordic and Baltic countries (Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Iceland, Latvia, Lithuania, Norway and Sweden) carry the bond further, reaching out to the culturally-rich Delhi audience.

“The Nordic-Baltic countries are tied together geographically and historically through trade and common values. Hence, it is a great pleasure to carry on these strong bonds and share the culture of our region with the Indian people through cinema. This film festival offers a diverse mix of some of the most celebrated films from the Nordic-Baltic region,” said the organiser of the festival.

The festival kicked off with Danish, Oscar-nominated film Land of Mine. The film highlighted young German prisoners of war who, after World War II, were forced to clear a beach of land mines by a Danish Sergeant.

The first day of the festival witnessed the Ambassadors from Nordic and Baltic Embassies. The envoys inaugurated the festival by lighting the ceremonial lamp together. “By hosting this festival, we hope to present the art of cinema as an important element, which binds highly multi-cultural regions together, by highlighting the shared experiences of life,” said Peter Taksøe-Jensen in his inaugural speech.

The festival offered different genres on different days, including several Oscar-nominated movies. For instance, in The Excursionist (Lithuania), a young girl escapes from a deportee train and starts the long journey back to her homeland or in The Lesson (Latvia), a teacher goes too far when she tries to befriend her class and falls in love with a student. Hobbyhorse Revolution (Finland) was a quirky documentary about teenagers who bond through riding and grooming toy horses. The movies depicted dreams, passion, fear, fun and action.

This festival gives all Nordic-Baltic countries a platform to enhance people-to-people relations and share the thrill, excitement and experience of watching films together.