DocPoint Releases its 20th Anniversary Programme

DocPoint, Finland’s main hub for documentary films, celebrates its 20th anniversary online. Scandinavia’s coolest festival launches two competitions and highlights new films from Africa, among other themes.

DocPoint  – Helsinki Documentary Film Festival will celebrate its 20th anniversary online on 29.1.–7.2.2021. The programme showcases 71 national and international films from 38 different production countries with a record-breaking 57% of the films directed by women.

The formerly non-competitive festival now launches two competition series; a national and an international one. The DocPoint-Yle Award for Best International Documentary Film as well as the DocPoint-Yle Award for Best Finnish Documentary Film are both 5000€. The winners will be announced on Saturday 6.2. at

The documentary film industry has taken the pandemic better than expected: Covid-19 has not halted the completion of productions. The virus might have a say in how we watch films this year, but it will not dictate what we watch. I am especially happy that our programme features so many  innovative films by  first-time directors”, says Kati Juurus, the festival’s artistic director.

DOCPOINT’S STRONG NATIONAL SELECTION will house a total of 20 of the most recent and intriguing documentaries to come out of Finland, most of which will have their world premieres at DocPoint. Seven of these films will be in the festival’s new competition series. DocPoint’s opening film is Anna Antsalo’s Walk the Tideline, which spotlights treasure hunters on faraway shores and the trash they scour through, abandoned and thrown out by people, yet inevitably always returned by the sea. John Webster’s Donner – Privat offers new perspectives into the life and thoughts of the controversial cultural icon and Finland’s only Oscar-winner Jörn Donner.  Suvi West’s Eatnameamet – Our Silent Struggle depicts Sámi experiences by a Sámi director. Antti Lempiäinen‘s intimate and intense Solitaire Dance offers three different perspectives on how loneliness feels, and how it can be survived. Mohamed Al Aboud’s School of Hope spotlights the creation of a school in the Moroccan desert, and Mia Halme’s People We Come Across follows a vaccine study in Benin where a group of Finnish tourists volunteer as guinea-pigs for a new shot being developed against diarrhea.

DOCPOINT’S INTERNATIONAL PROGRAMME takes a look at African docs, BLM and the experience of indigenous peoples, among other themes. The festival’s international selection consists of 39 films. Gianfranco Rosi’s Notturno, Viktor Kossakovsky’s Gunda, Sam Pollard’s MLK/FBI, Sam Soko’s Softie , Arami Ullón’s Nothing but the Sun and Anabel Rodríguez Ríos’s Once upon a Time in Venezuela are some of DocPoint’s out-of-competition festival hits. Altogether 11 films have been selected for the international competition (please see for the competition films and entire online programme).

”Taking the festival online felt like a bit of a tragedy at first. But being able to bring a unique selection of the world’s best new documentary films to new audiences outside of Helsinki is also a great opportunity to spread the gospel of documentary film amongst people who normally do not have access to them”, says Kati Juurus.

Films are geo-blocked for Finland but Q&A’s and panel discussions will be accessible from everywhere.

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Contacts for the media (images, more information, screening links, interview requests): 

Publicist Nora Norrlin, tel. 040 846 0116 #docpoint2021


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