Unusual but effective struggle-and-survival story

Trending Now


It sounds like the first line of a national-stereotype joke: a young Finnish sniper, a weary Russian soldier and a Lapp woman are thrown together in a remote corner of Lapland just as WWII is winding down. The punchline is that none of them speak a word of the others’ languages, yet somehow they forge a precarious harmony that transcends cultures and nations as they attempt to survive the coming winter.

Writer-director Aleksandr Rogozhkin’s nimble script generates honest comedy out of the trio’s mutual misunderstandings. Occasionally the peace fractures and the Russian tries to kill the “fascist” Finn (actually a peace-loving conscript left to die by his own army). Somehow he’s always saved by the Lapp’s feminine intervention, which reveals its mystical powers at the end. Despite it being a three-hander set almost entirely in the Lapp’s aboriginal compound beside a stunning lake, Rogozhkin generates taut drama simply out of the combustible characters themselves. Also, watch closely and you’ll learn how to make handy things with twigs and cured reindeer hides.


Latest Issue



Jack Cooper of Modern Nature’s fresh perspective on life and music: “I’m after openness and expansiveness now”

Zookeeper, garage-rock avatar, avant-garde explorer… Jack Cooper had already travelled long distances before he left the city for the right kind of quiet. But while this move has given Cooper fresh perspective, what does it mean for his band, Modern Nature?