• Dir: Aki Kaurismäki

  • Finland, 1988, Finnish, 72mins, DCP

  • Cast: Turo Pajala, Susanna Haavisto, Matti Pellonpää, Eetu Hilkamo

A compelling blend of gritty realism and escapist fantasy, this second part of the ‘Proletarian Trilogy’ elevates Aki to the pantheon of world cinema. It all begins when a hapless coalminer is laid off as Finland switches to nuclear power. Setting off with a white Cadillac convertible to find opportunities in the South, he only slides into penury and misfortunate, leading him to unjust imprisonment and eventually to criminal acts. At once bleak and cynically humorous, Aki’s cool existential tragicomedy toys his hero with more than a twist, undercut by a minorkey romance, and an optimistic light at the end, alongside an exotic ‘Over the Rainbow’.