Young film makers in group photo with colourful background.
Document was produced in cooperation by journalist Johannes Roviomaa and RARE Media. The main characters of the film are researchers from the Arctic Centre at the University of Lapland. Photo: Veeti Hietikko.

Documentary film Dear Arctic shows why arctic research is vital

17.8.2023 14:25

Documentary film Dear Arctic follows the researchers of the Arctic region and delves into the work of the Arctic Center in the University of Lapland.

– More people should know what is happening in the Arctic and why the world's interest is focused there, says Vilma Rimpelä, one of the producers and directors of the film Dear Arctic.

Johannes Roviomaa, film’s screenwriter and visiting researcher at the Arctic Centre strongly agrees.

– Right now we need to turn our focus and attention to the world’s attic, and look for answers to seemingly impossible questions. What happens in the Arctic doesn’t stay there. 

War in Ukraine has frozen Arctic cooperation in Russia, which has the majority of the Arctic region within its borders. Finnish Arctic anthropologists still maintain connections with local communities, as critically important research work must continue. The first part of the film Dear Arctic dives into the work of researchers Florian Stammler and Aytalina Ivanova who are doing arctic anthropology in Siberia, in the lands of reindeer herders and fishermen.

Greenland's continental glacier is called the heart of the earth, the heartbeat of which has become increasingly uneven due to the melting of the glacier. Researchers John Moore and Ilona Mettiäinen work within the Grisco project with a goal to build undersea curtains near the Greenland glacier to slow down warm seawater reaching the glacier. At best, the project could slow down the melting of the glacier and the rise of the sea level, which in turn would reduce the amount of climate refugees in the future. However, there is a lot of critical discussion around climate repair, and in the film the researchers consider the future of the project and how to finance their important research work.

– Things are not worse than they were before. Our eyes have only focused on these problems for the first time, says researcher Marjo Lindroth. Lindroth works together with colleague Heidi Sinevaara-Niskanen on Critical Arctic Research. At the end film Dear Arctic delves into how power has influenced what issues we want to study and where Arctic research should focus in the future.

The Dear Arctic documentary is produced by RARE Media from Tampere and journalist Johannes Roviomaa. The production team comes outside the film industry. Through the documentary, the filmmakers want to increase the awareness of the Arctic, especially among the young audience.

– One of the goals of the production is to produce content that is easily accessible to young people. We are really happy that we made it into Koulukino's content, which brings us even closer to our target audience, says Orna Ben Lulu, one of the film's producers.

FALL 2023 Screenings for Dear Arctic:

31.8. // Helsinki // Preview, Arctic Momentum, Kino Orion, 10PM
14.9. // Rovaniemi // Premiere, Kulttuuritalo Wiljami, 6PM
14.9. // Helsinki // Love and Anarchy Film Festival (HIFF) side event, Puistokatu 2kr, 6PM
20.9. // Tampere // Tullikamarin Klubi, 7PM
13.11. // Rovaniemi // Rovaniemi Arctic Spirit TBA

17.8. DearArctic-6.jpg
Document follows the work of the researchs for example in Rovaniemi and Iceland. 

More information:

Producer Orna Ben Lulu,  orna(at), 0445595259

Markku Heikkilä, Head of science communications, Arctic Centre at the University of Lapland, markku.heikkila(at), 040 484 4300