The Man without a Past: Movie talk

This is a 2002 Finnish film about a man saved by the Salvation Army in a most odd manner.  For your reference, here is a wiki summary and Rotten Tomato review.  But for my post, let me tell you a few points I enjoyed about the film:

  • It is in Finnish — a language I have never heard.  I loved the new exposure though I must say, my first impression of the language was not positive.  But language aesthetics  is simply a matter of personal taste and apparently I have odd tastes in language, because I enjoy: Russian, Arabic, Swedish and German to name a few.
  • It was a slow movie with much feeling.
  • It showed deep relationships forming with almost no dialogue of any significant content nor any action.  This bothered me at first, because I love dialogue and action.  But soon, I learned to value the silence.  Interesting.
  • It showed two people meet through religion, help break its rules and form their own redemption.  Though the religion is somewhat ignored, it always played a role.  The religion was not obstructive, but deeply helpful.
  • It was a film with redemption — one of my favorite themes.
  • I spent a summer working in Ocean Grove — Jersey Beach religious town known as “The Queen of Religious Resorts”.   My job was as a dishwasher in a large hotel on the beach owned by a Salvation Army family.  I found both the town and the religion stifling.  This film showed a stuffy Salvation Army too.  But the two main characters found redemption in spite of that.

— HT for the recommendation to a Petteri, a Finnish blogger.


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4 responses to “The Man without a Past: Movie talk

  1. Thanks for the tip. This is exactly the sort of movie that I would like and exactly the sort of movie that would drive my wife nuts.

  2. alywaibel

    Thanks for this recommendation! Sounds good.

  3. @ Dan
    Yeah, my wife and I don’t share common films interests — I watched that movie last night and she watched “Hot Tub Time Machine”.

  4. I’m glad you enjoyed it. I thought you might.

    If you liked the Kaurismäki style of directing, you might want to check out some of their other flicks as well. I’d hold off on Calamari Union, though, because that’s just plain bizarre until and unless you develop a real feel for their pacing and style. Zombie and the Ghost Train is also very good, I thought, and similar in thematics but different enough in other ways that it doesn’t feel repetitive.

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