Sunday, June 18, 2023

Palimpsest (2022) in the presence of Hanna Västinsalo and Cyril Jacob Abraham

Hanna Västinsalo: Palimpsest (FI 2022).

Palimpsesti: ohita intro
DIRECTOR: Hanna Västinsalo
COUNTRY: Finland
YEAR: 2022
DURATION: 109 min
LANGUAGES: Finnish / subtitled in English
CATEGORY: Finnish Films, Finnish Premiere, New Finnish Films, Puhuttu tai tekstitetty suomeksi, Subtitles in English
In the presence of Hanna Västinsalo and Cyril Jacob Abraham, hosted by Timo Malmi.
Lapinsuu, Sodankylä, Midnight Sun Film Festival (MSFF), 18 June 2023.

Tytti Rantanen (MSFF 2023): "Hanna Västinsalo’s Palimpsest (2022) had its world premiere in the Venice Film Festival’s Biennale College Cinema programme and offers a speculative solution to the elderly care crisis. For the individual, though, it can mean another type of crisis, in which the biological body containing the same old mind can be rejuvenated right back to square one.

Octogenarians Juhani and Telle meet for the first time as roommates at an institution where they participate in a human genetic experiment. Juhani (Antti Virmavirta & Leo Sjöman) is grieving both for his wife, who died of old age, and his daughter, who doesn’t know how to relate to her father’s rejuvenated appearance. Telle (Riitta Havukainen, Krista Kosonen, Emma Kipimaa & Kaisu Mäkelä) is a lonely individual who casts off restraint in her transformation from sexually liberated adult and young woman to skater girl and beyond…

An enthusiastic Juhani describes to Telle how they can live as if it is 1969, but with all the wisdom and life experience they’ve acquired since then. ‘It is now 1969!’ However, the clock of the surrounding world has not been obligingly turned back, too. Palimpsest provides an antidote to the fear of ageing and the passage of time, and helps us question why we are here in the first place." (Tytti Rantanen)

AA: Palimpsest is a fascinating debut film by Hanna Västinsalo, bringing an original intelligence into a futuristic tale carried by deeply felt performances.

Time travel and time reversal is a popular theme in contemporary cinema, and Västinsalo, a scientist by education, brings something new into it.

We dream of eternal life and getting young again, but have we thought through what it would mean when our childen would meet us as younger than themselves?

I was also thinking that we live today in an attitude of "no future". We don't make enough children. And now we want to live forever?

I look forward to more from Västintalo.

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