Lugubrious Finns Valto and Reino take to the road in search of coffee and vodka, without which their lives are not worth living. But their reveries are interrupted by the arrival of ...
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Lugubrious Finns Valto and Reino take to the road in search of coffee and vodka, without which their lives are not worth living. But their reveries are interrupted by the arrival of garrulous Russian Klaudia and Estonian Tatiana - who are clearly interested in the two men, despite the language barrier. But what are the chances of getting a response from men who prefer staring at vodka bottles to talking? Written by
Michael Brooke <email@example.com>
The Finnish infant terrible returns to the monochromatic rock'n'roll vibes of his earlier CALAMARI UNION, only this time he substitutes the avant-garde surrealism with the silent, deadpan minimalism he meticulously cultivated for most of his career. Two thirty-something rockers working menial jobs and leading dead-end lives embark on an impromptu journey in their cool car, along with a coffee-car mixer and a portable record player. Along the way they meet two Russian women who are looking for a lift.
TATJANA is part road movie, part romance, both done in Kaurismaki's distinct, ever so enjoyable and relaxed, quiet way. The black and white cinematography is absolutely fantastic, the soundtrack as usually an eclectic mix of rock'n'roll, jazz and folk and the mood of the same deadpan unaffection that permeates the rest of his work. His characters cold and detached on the outside, yet they miraculously emote better than the best overacting could afford you.
Clocking at only 59 minutes, TATJANA doesn't so much feel as a fully-fledged movie as a broad stroke. Seen independent it's one thing; seen as part of Kaurismaki's broader universe, like another vignette of gloomy but not miserable Finnish life, it takes its proper place. See it in a double-bill with CALAMARI UNION or ARIEL.
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