The four-day festival gives a Finnish premier to 18 East and Southeast Asian films. In addition to topical films, the festival also hosts five expert discussions in which new perspectives to the films will be explored. Helsinki Cine Aasia is the only festival of contemporary Asian cinema in Finland and it has been held annually since 2013.One of the directors of the film “They Sing Up On The Hill” (2018), Mongolian Bat-Amgalan Lkhagvajav is Helsinki Cine Aasia’s will attend Helsinki Cine Aasia. The film that charms with its sincerity is focused on two young musicians’ encounter and the tenor of their lives in rapidly changing Mongolia.
Bat-Amgalan Lkhagvajav directed the film together with the British filmmaker Ian Allardyce. The two have known each other since 2002 when they worked together on the first reality TV talent show in Mongolia. “They Sing Up On The Hill” is Lkhagvajav’s first full-length feature film. He has previously directed short films, including “The Red Forest” (2005), “An Encounter in the Woods” (2009) and “The Wonderful Flight” (2015).

Helsinki Cine Aasia’s other guest of honour is the Japanese director Shuichi Okita whose latest film Mori, “The Artist’s Habitat” (2018) is the festival’s opening film. Shuichi Okita’s sympathetic dramas have repeatedly been among the most popular films at Helsinki Cine Aasia.

Both director guests will attend the screenings of their film. “They Sing Up On The Hill” will be screened on Friday 15th March at 7.15pm at Korjaamo Kulmasali and on Sunday 17th March at 11.30am at Korjaamo Elokuvasali. A special free-of-charge screening of the film is organised on Monday 18th March at 6pm at Vuotalo. Shuichi Okita will attend the screenings of his film “Mori, The Artist’s Habitat” on Thursday 14th March at 6pm at Korjaamo Elokuvasali (the festival’s opening screening) and on Saturday 16th March at 3:45pm at Korjaamo Kulmasali. “Mori, The Artist’s Habitat”  will also be screened on Thursday 14th March at 10am in the Parent & Baby Screening at Kino Regina.
Perspectives to the programme
In addition to unique cinematic experiences, Helsinki Cine Aasia also presents an opportunity to gain insights to the themes arising from the films in the festival’s programme in discussions with leading experts in their fields.
The discussions are open to all.

Situation of the Rohingya in South East Asia: Rohingya Muslims have been a target of a military crackdown in Myanmar. The situation has been described even as a genocide. Hundreds of thousands have fled to the neighbouring countries. Discussing the issue are Anu Tuukkanen from Amnesty International and Timo Kuronen from Siemenpuu Foundation. In Finnish.
Sat 16.3. at 1.20pm, Korjaamo mezzanine. Following the screening of Manta Ray.

Theatre and Dance in Asian Cinema: In East and South East Asia, there is a rich tradition of dance and theatre. How are these art forms presented in Asian cinema? Discussing the topic is an expert on Asian arts, writer and cultural critic Jukka O. Miettinen. In Finnish.
Sat 16.3. at 3.20pm, Korjaamo mezzanine. Following the screening of Song Lang. Also related to topic is the film Memories of My Body which will be screened on the same day at 6.30pm at Korjaamo Kulmasali and the performance by Ken Mai at Korjaamo lobby at 8.30pm.

Social Turning Point of 1960s and 1970s in Japan: In Japan, the turn of the 1960s and 1970s represented a social turning point, when the old was rebelled against in many areas. Provocation was also present in the arts and media, for example in erotic pinku films and in new forms of musical expression. At the same time, established production systems still affected film, music and television. Lasse Lehtonen, researcher and writer of a recent book on Japanese music, discusses the theme. In Finnish.
Sat 16.3. 5.50pm, Korjaamo lobby. Before the screening of Dare To Stop Us.

China, Hong Kong and Taiwan: China, Hong Kong and Taiwan have each made their own way, but all have a long and intertwined history. What is the situation today when the People’s Republic of China is becoming increasingly active in world politics? Jyrki Kallio, senior researcher at the Finnish Institute of International Affairs, discusses the issue. The event is organized in co-operation with Finland-China Society. In Finnish.Sun 17.3. 3.50pm, Korjaamo mezzanine. Following the screening of A Family Tour and before the screening of No. 1 Chung Ying Street.North-South Korea Interactions: Interactions between North and South Korea are depicted in several South Korean movies. These include topics like spying and the human tragedy with the division of families. The topics and their changes under the changing political winds will be discussed by Andrew Logie, Assistant Professor in Korean Studies at the University of Helsinki. In English.
Sun 17.3. 6.20pm, Korjaamo mezzanine. After the screening of Beautiful Days and before the screening of The Spy Gone North.

The full Helsinki Cine Aasia 2019 programme is available on the festival’s website. All films are subtitled in the English. Tickets to the screenings can be bought on the festival’s website. During the festival, tickets can also be bought at the festival’s screening locations at Korjaamo Kino, Orion and Kino Regina. Helsinki Cine Aasia is supported by the City of Helsinki and the Japan Foundation. Our partners are Korjaamo Kino, KAVI – The National Audiovisual Institute, Orion, Japan Airlines, Lie Mi, Singha, Episodi, Amnesty International and the Finland-China Society.