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Haapsalu Horror & Fantasy Film Festival (HÕFF) will reawaken zombies

This year's fifth annual Haapsalu Horror & Fantasy Film Festival (HÕFF) will reawaken zombies and feast on modern French horror.

Estonia's only festival devoted to the fantasy, horror, science fiction and trash film genres will run from 23-25 April at Haapsalu, Estonia ( - once a renown summer retreat of the Russian Czars, now a picturesque spa town infamous for healing mud treatments. The fifth HÕFF features the screening of over 19 full-length films from more than 10 countries, a thematic photo exhibition and make up effects workshop, the latest offerings from Estonian horror film and plenty of celebrations and special events - such as a parade of the living dead through the streets of central Haapsalu (luckily just a costume party).

Along with the new films in the main program - representing the latest science fiction and horror film classics from all over the world - the festival is dedicating this year's installment to 21st century French horror in all of its frightening forms. The French zombie film "Mutants", which has made waves with its fast-paced action and gore, will open this year's festival on a giant outdoor screen at Haapsalu Bishop's Castle.


The second focus of the festival is an homage to the Japanese director Shinya Tsukamoto's cult classic experimental series "Tetsuo", which first premiered exactly 20 years ago.

The first and last film in the trilogy - completed last year - will be shown non-stop on a big screen on 35mm film.


More emphasis will lie on the freak film programme this year, where every B movie buff and fan of the slightly eccentric will find something to their taste. Meanwhile, extreme film will get its due with no less than two screenings of the work of scandalous Siberian-based film-maker Andrei Iskanov - banned in his native Russia.


For the exact film listings, check the film festival website on 29 March.


The festival is brought to you by the Tallinn Black Nights Film Festival (, one of the largest art house festivals in the region together with Haapsalu Culture Center and the City of Haapsalu.

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