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Marcia Gay Harden,
25-year-old Iiris and Karoliina have been best friends since childhood. Karoliina has been travelling and living abroad for some years now, but is coming back home for the summer as Karoliina has found them a job as waitresses in Hanko, the best summer city in Finland.
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Markus dreams of becoming a street ball star in New York, but spends his days in his home suburb Korso, in Finland, playing ball with his friends in an old warehouse - and drinking. When Markus's little sister brings a black guy Jojo home Markus's dream is put to test. He risks everything to prove that his dream is not ridiculous. But what if it is? Written by
Presumably not endorsed by the Korso tourist board...
Korso is a district in the Finnish city of Vantaa and, if the film of the same name is to be believed, it's a pretty grim place, consisting mainly of sink estates, bored youth and deserted mothers. Markus, just into his twenties, is a talented basketball player and dreams of escaping Korso for the streetball scene of New York City. But how to get the money to pay for his ticket? He's unemployed, has little education, and spends his days hanging around with his equally no-hoper friends: he's not going to walk into a highly-paid job. Perhaps the local gangster will give him some money...
The film is refreshing in that its protagonist isn't overwhelmingly likable: he's not all bad, but the house-breaking, the mindless vandalism and the casual racism mean the viewer doesn't feel obliged to root for Markus. However, I would have liked a bit more explanation from the script: for instance, when he finally gets his airplane ticket, Markus doesn't take the flight but instead gets royally drunk in a bar. Why? Is he guilty he's just beaten up his sister's boyfriend? Scared of leaving what he knows? Worried he won't succeed in NY? Why?
One point of interest is that lead actor Mikko Neuvonen, when seen with a floppy fringe at the end of the film, bears a resemblance to Chris Evans of Captain America fame. Could be a heartthrob in the making!
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