Run time: 100 mins
Master director Aki Kaurismaki returns with his first feature in six years, helming this bittersweet comedy-drama of bleak fate and unlikely friendship.
Desperately avoiding a group of violent aggressors, Syrian refugee Khaled (Sherwan Haji) unwittingly arrives in the distinctly unfamiliar Helsinki by accident after having slipped aboard a departing coal freighter. Separated from his sister and alone in a foreign city, he takes to hiding out behind a small, grotty local dive: The Golden Pint.
When the sour, middle-aged proprietor Wikstrom discovers his uninvited guest camped out, the two come to blows. But when the dust settles, so does their misconceptions and following a warming bowl of soup and a kindly job offer, Wikstrom and his staff soon become Khaled’s allies and protectors in a community thrown together by circumstance.
Winner of the Best Director award at this year’s Berlin Film Festival, Kaurismaki deserves every plaudit for a film which perfectly blends gut-wrenching melancholy with the absurdly hilarious.
“Devilishly funny.” (Guardian)
“A gently loving fable with a straightforward political message that home can be wherever you find it.” (Sight & Sound) (research Chris Coetsee) Sounds fabulous, come and see.