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The Man Without a Past (2002)
"Mies vailla menneisyyttä" (original title)

7.7
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Ratings: 7.7/10 from 15,573 users   Metascore: 84/100
Reviews: 113 user | 101 critic | 29 from Metacritic.com

The second part of Aki Kaurismäki's "Finland" trilogy, the film follows a man who arrives in Helsinki and gets beaten up so severely he develops amnesia. Unable to remember his name or ... See full summary »

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 22 wins & 21 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
M
...
Irma
Juhani Niemelä ...
Nieminen
Kaija Pakarinen ...
Kaisa Nieminen
Sakari Kuosmanen ...
Annikki Tähti ...
Manager of Flea Market
Anneli Sauli ...
Bar Owner
Elina Salo ...
Dock Clerk
...
Bank Clerk
Esko Nikkari ...
Bank Robber
Pertti Sveholm ...
Police Detective
Matti Wuori ...
Layer
Aino Seppo ...
Ex-wife
Janne Hyytiäinen ...
Ovaskainen
Antti Reini ...
Electrician
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Storyline

The second part of Aki Kaurismäki's "Finland" trilogy, the film follows a man who arrives in Helsinki and gets beaten up so severely he develops amnesia. Unable to remember his name or anything from his past life, he cannot get a job or an apartment, so he starts living on the outskirts of the city and slowly starts putting his life back on track. Written by Jussi Tarvainen <jussi_tarvainen_84@hotmail.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for some violence | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

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Language:

Release Date:

6 November 2002 (France)  »

Also Known As:

The Man Without a Past  »

Filming Locations:


Box Office

Budget:

FIM 8,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$23,281 (USA) (4 April 2003)

Gross:

$921,547 (USA) (19 September 2003)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
See  »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

This film won the London Evening Standard's "Palm Dog" award at the Cannes Film Festival for the best animal role. The winning dog's name, aptly, is Tähti ("Star" in Finnish). See more »

Goofs

The Helsinki railway station's extension roof is clearly visible at the opening scene, but it hadn't been build yet in 1996 (the year can be read from the newspaper). See more »

Quotes

Nieminen: Rather small potatoes.
M: The weather was bad. But they will make a soup.
Nieminen: When did you plan to make it?
M: Why so interested?
Nieminen: I have an onion. You need it for the soup.
M: I've got eight potatoes. I must save three for winter and at least two as seed potatoes. We farmers must think of the coming years, too. We only eat what is left over. There is not enough for three. I want to invite Irma to dinner.
Nieminen: So none for me?
M: Right.
Nieminen: You're selfish.
M: I am a realist. You city people are children of the moment.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in Sidewalls (2011) See more »

Soundtracks

Thunder And Lightning (Myrskyn keskellä)
Performed by Marko Haavisto & Poutahaukat
(Marko Haavisto / Vesa Haaja)
Published by Love Music Publishing
(P) & © 2002 Sputnik/Johanna Kustannus
Licensed courtesy of Johanna Kustannus
See more »

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User Reviews

 
Simple virtues!
4 May 2003 | by (Oceanside,Ca.) – See all my reviews

This is the first Aki Kaurismaki film that I have seen and it is the second film in a trilogy. I definitely want to see the first one now and I plan on seeing the third whenever it comes to my neck of the woods. Film is a very simple story of a man (Markku Peltola) who while waiting for a train goes to a park and falls asleep on a park bench. Three thugs come along and beat and rob him. He is so beaten that when he wakes up in a hospital he has amnesia. We never do find out his name! He leaves the hospital and has no where to go. A very poor family living in a metal container take him in and try to help him. He goes to the Salvation Army for free food and an opportunity to work small jobs and its there that he meets Irma (Kati Outinen) and is attracted to her. The film follows this man as he romances Irma and works odd jobs. Its all presented in a very dry and droll comedic fashion. All the characters are very emotionless no matter what the circumstances are and in some ways its reminiscent of the films that Jacques Tati use to make. In one scene in a bank a robber enters and shoots a broken security camera and the teller and our protagonist all act very calm and very polite. At the heart of this film is even though the characters are very quiet they are very helpful of one another and seem to care for each other. I have heard that all of Kaurismaki films are like this and its been nicknamed "Aki's world". Kaurismaki is a very unique filmmaker and the way he presents his characters is in contrast to the bleak area that they live in. Even though the film and the characters are laid back in their attitude, the romance between the man and Irma shouts of passion. Their affection and fondness for one another doesn't need words. It rings loud and clear!


19 of 22 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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Reccomend Finnish films please... entertainme84
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