Reykjavik International Film Festival

28 September – 8 October 2017

RIFF - Reykjavík International Film Festival - is one of the biggest and most diverse cultural events in Iceland. RIFF is an independent non-profit organization. Our staff works all year round to organize the festival but we couldn’t do that without the help of volunteers from all over the world that come to Reykjavik every year to help out.

For eleven days every fall since 2004 Icelandic people and tourists alike go to the cinema to enjoy the best and freshest of international filmmaking. Our guests can also meet and chat with directors about their works, attend panels and workshops, concerts and exhibitions, and even watch interesting films under even more interesting conditions, for instance in a swimming pool or a barn.

The festival also manages the RIFF industry office, complete with a video library, information and guest services, and co-organizes networking meetings and dinners for the attending professionals. The festival shows a wide range of dramas and non-fiction films from over 40 countries. The festival highlights independent film making from all over the world with an emphasis on up-and-coming filmmakers, with the main prize - the Golden Puffin, being awarded only to first or second time directors.

RIFF was founded in September 2004, by a small group of film professionals and film enthusiasts led by Festival Director Hrönn Marinósdóttir, with the goal of presenting new and progressive quality films, supporting innovation in filmmaking, networking between professionals from various parts of the world and fostering social and cultural dialogue.

Our Program in 2017
RIFF will screen roughly 90 feature films from around 40 countries. For our guests’ convenience, they are arranged in various categories that have solidified over time. The categories include New Visions (the grand prix competition), a section limited to the first and second films of up-and-coming directors; Open Seas (out of competition), which includes acclaimed films from many of the most talented and respected filmmakers of the world; A Different Tomorrow, foregrounding films that help to make us better citizens in the world; and Documentaries, a section becoming more and more popular with films about music, art, culture, politics, and more. We also screen Icelandic and international shorts and present a special film program for the youngest audience, ages 2-16.

In addition to these categories we each year shine a spotlight on a national cinema; last year it was Poland but this year we celebrate the centenary of Finland's independence by screening Finnish films, both new and old. Highlights of this section include documentary Tom of Finland as well as an exhibition of his drawings, and a retrospective of the Kaurismäki brothers’ works.

Last, but not least, we celebrate the lifework of our guests of honor and present an emerging master, who in 2017 is Valeska Grisebach. This year our guests of honor are Werner Herzog and Olivier Assayas, who’ll both be hosting a masterclass during the festival. Tickets for Werner Herzog’s masterclass can be purchased in RIFF’s web shop but Assayas’ masterclass will be open to the public. 

This year's festival will be the 14th edition of RIFF, taking place between the 28th of September and 8th of October.

For more information please visit the Reykjavík International Film Festival website.