|Wilho Ilmari, Irja Lindström.|
The surviving fragment /20 fps/ 12 min viewed at Cinema Orion, Helsinki (Erkki Karu), ♪ piano Joonas Raninen, 19 Feb 2014
The surviving fragment is from somewhere around reel 2 of 5. The smugglers receive cargo from a bootleg liquor ship to their boat. Eerik's task is to pilot the motorboat through the archipelago to a safe bay. The smugglers are tailed by a patrol boat of the customs office. They manage to shake it off, unload the cargo and disguise as a hunting party before the customs task force find them, inspect the boat and must leave empty-handed.
A foundation film of a tradition of Finnish smuggling films, followed by VMV 6 (1936, Risto Orko), and Varsovan laulu / [The Song of Warsaw] (1953, Matti Kassila).
Finland had Prohibition in 1919-1932 (starting and ending one year earlier than in the US), and crime was rampant during our own Roaring Twenties. Myrskyluodon kalastaja - what remains of it - is a valuable fictional record of that, and as it was shot on location, it cannot help having even some documentary value. It is also an early Finnish action film, crime film, and gangster film. Sadly, it's mostly lost, but this fragment gives a sense of it.
The film debut of Wilho Ilmari (1888-1983), a great man of the Finnish theatre, a Kivi and Shakespeare specialist.