7.2/10
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Calamari Union (1985)

An exodus to a better life in Eira

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Timo Eränkö ...
Frank
Kari Heiskanen ...
Frank
Asmo Hurula ...
Frank
...
Frank
...
Frank Armoton (as Saku Kuosmanen)
Dave Lindholm ...
Mies rannalla
Mikko Mattila ...
Frank
...
Frank
...
Taksikuski (as Hannu Nurmio)
...
Frank
...
Frank
Pertti Sveholm ...
Frank
...
Frank
Pantse Syrjä ...
Frank
...
Pekka
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Storyline

Fourteen desperate men named Frank, band together to escape from a repressive section of Helsinki. An English-speaking non-Frank named Pekka joins the barroom conspirators, whose avoidance of last names, and any affect, help them outsmart overwhelming forces as they sneak through dark subway tunnels and alleys, hoping against despair to reach magical seaside Eira. The Calamari Unionists take advantage of unending night to venture their intrepid journey. Written by David Stevens

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Plot Keywords:

alley | tunnel | subway | journey | city | See All (23) »

Genres:

Comedy

Certificate:

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Details

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Release Date:

8 February 1985 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Союз Каламари  »

Filming Locations:

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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Sound Mix:

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Did You Know?

Trivia

The lengthy monologue of Matti Pellonpää is an exact rendition of the poem "La grasse matinée", written by poet and screenwriter Jacques Prévert. See more »

Goofs

When the Franks break into the nightclub for a drink and are sitting at the bar, the boom is clearly visible in one of the mirrors behind the bar. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Frank: Gentlemen! I don't want to tire you and especially myself by going through those many reasons which make life completely impossible in this part of the city. We all know the circumstances forced on us in our early years: crowded homes, ignorance and hunger. Not to mention the bad air conditioning in the busses with their irregular timetables. In this part of the city there are more hills than anywhere else in the world. Loose-running kids and dogs make it impossible to move in the ...
[...]
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Connections

Featured in Ailan aika (1994) See more »

Soundtracks

You're My Thrill
Composed by Jay Gorney
Lyrics by Sidney Clare
Performed by Billie Holiday & Gordon Jenkins and his Orchestra
Vocals: Billie Holiday
From the record:
Billie Holiday (Decca Records, W75421A, 19.10.1949)
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User Reviews

 
Simply outstanding : Aki Kaurismaki films a gauche rock band's members seeking their elusive El Dorado in Helsinki.
17 March 2010 | by (Paris,France) – See all my reviews

Finnish film "Calamari Union" is not at all a motion picture with a defined setting.It is more of a visual experience with surreal touches which must be seen many times to feel the plight of hapless rock musicians in an urban milieu.In "Calamari Union",there is also a minor battle of sexes to be witnessed as most of the women get their demands met by hapless,vulnerable men.Women are shown as strong willed individuals who would not stop at anything to humiliate, scorn confused men who are treated as mere caddish oafs.Rock music is also one of this film's leading element which reveals the hidden talent of some vagrant musicians.There are some mellifluous tunes which could easily be lapped up by music lovers.No talented film director in the history of modern cinema has come even remotely closer to Finnish author Aki Kaurismaki's vision of urban angst.This is a director who has made an absolutely wise use of his hometown Helsinki and its nocturnal atmosphere by shooting in pristine black and white.He shows why some people are not able to put any order in their utterly disorganized,messy lives.A unique film which is absolutely needed for those nihilists who believe that they are part of existential times.PS:A great film dedicated to Baudelaire,Michaux and Prévert who still hover on earth.Lalit Rao does not care if non Francophones are not aware of Baudelaire,Michaux and Prévert.


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