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The war between Luxembourg and Finland sets the outline to a set of comedic stories about a rally team, gay couple's fishing trip, two hoodlums' last school days in the spring and a haunted hotel among others.
The film is about young juvenile, "Luumu" (a plum), (Olavi Uusivirta), who is sent to his uncle to work. His uncle (Heikki Silvennoinen) is a driver-instructor, former rally driver, and keen on getting laid with his new student (Satu Silvo). Uncle is working with Pekkarinen (Kai Hyttinen), who is building a car for a local rally championship races under name Team Susa. Again, Pekkarinen has a rival, family of Torppo, who owns a company which sells cars, and has it's own rally team. Older Torppo (Heikki Nousiainen) seems to be okay with the past, but the younger (Antti Virmavirta) seems to think that the team of Pekkarinen is a bunch of losers.
As Pekkarinen, and all his subordinates, or employees, work in a hall which is owned by older Torppo, and younger Torppo is becoming the head of Torppo family, there is some friction between Pekkarinen and younger Torppo. This ends in a bet: Team Susa and all people connected to it, must find a new place, unless it beats Torppo team in the race. And so it goes, these two teams compete in the race, but before that, there is a minor problem: Susa's driver gets injured in practice, and Luumu becomes the driver, under construction of his uncle.
The story reminds of several other films made about racing. You might find some connections to Love Bug, or other films like that, or even Days of Thunder. However, Ralliraita misses two things, which would make it more noteworthy: firstly, the story and the dialogue lack originality. Most of the actors seem not to be in the right place, speaking in the manner, they clearly do not speak normally. This does not add anything to the humour, except certain kind of clumsiness. Otherwise, the humour relies on self-evident situations (e.g. a man knocks on the door, Luumu wakes up and opens the door. The man says: "Herää, tai no sä oot jo hereillä." (Wake up, or well you are awake already), which is not perhaps the right method for comedy. Secondly, the actors are not as funny, as they should be in this kind of "humour" film. They are not quite there in the comedy, which needs certain kinds of expressions, and living in the situation. For me it was more a dramatic film, and it becomes difficult to adjust in the genre in which this was supposed to fit in.
Watching the film reminded me of a concern, that has been raised in Finnish film industry: we do have good actors, directors, and technical skills, but we lack good writers. This film, may be one of the examples to prove the point. It is too dramatic to be a good-mood film, and it's way too clumsy, harsh, pointless to be a good dramatic film.
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