Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Napapiirin sankarit / Lapland Odyssey / [Heroes of the Polar Circle]

FI/IS/SE (c) 2010 Helsinki-Filmi / Ripple World Pictures / Anagram Produktion. P: Aleksi Bardy. D: Dome Karukoski. SC: Pekko Pesonen. DP: Pini Hellstedt. Starring: Jussi Vatanen (Janne), Pamela Tola (Inari), Jasper Pääkkönen, Timo Lavikainen, Kari Ketonen, Miia Nuutila, Melissa Heininen. 92 min. A Sandrew Metronome print with English subtitles by Aretta Vähälä viewed at Helsinki Film Festival (The Finnish Gala), Bio Rex, 22 Sep 2010

In the presence of Dome Karukoski and members of the cast and crew.

A black comedy, an odyssey of three young men in the kaamos (the sunless period) of Lapland, on the road from Ylläs to Rovaniemi.

Many times Janne has promised Inari to acquire a DVR, and if he doesn't succeed tonight, it's the last straw.

The film obviously succeeded perfectly as a comedy (the audience roared with laughter), but I kept focusing on the serious side of the story. This is a story of young men who are unemployed, marginalized, and lonely. Pekko Pesonen and Dome Karukoski make us laugh with them, not at them.

The visual quality has been difficult to achieve as the story is set in the sunless period of Lapland, and there is a special mist from the tunturi (fjeld, hill) landscape. We get to see the Northern lights, too.

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