Washington, D.C. Premiere The Finnish national epic, Kalevala, forms the basis of this four-part film, set in the magnificent landscape of Finland. The national pride and sense of identity expressed in the traditional poetry of the Kalevala inspired Finnish independence, and also influenced the writings of J.R. Tolkien and his Lord of the Rings Trilogy. Poet Paavo Haavikko has created a new interpretation of the ancient mythology in his screenplay, following the heroes as they look for women, wage war against the people of the North and, in the end, contemplate life, love and death. Directed by Kalle Holmberg. Produced by Reima Kekäläinen.
Parts 3 and 4 will be shown on Saturday, March 27.
PART 1: THE WOMAN OF GOLD (KULTANAINEN) (50 min.) The blacksmith llmari has lost his wife and forges himself the Woman of Gold. “She is remarkable, as if she was made of two things no one had tried before, dreams and silver.” Väinö buys Jouko’s sister, Aino, for himself but she refuses him and drowns herself. Jouko takes revenge on Väinö.
PART 2: THE SAMPO (77 min.) “Build a boat without using your hands or paying for it” says the daughter of the North when Väinö asks for her price. Ilmari and Lemminki also woo her. The Mistress of the North demands that Ilmari forge a Sampo, a magic mill to make money. Lemminki is sent on skis to catch a Devil’s moose. The contest ends at a wedding – but who is the groom?
In Finnish with English subtitles. Contains some nudity and violence.
Introduced by Pekka Hako, Cultural Counselor, Embassy of Finland.