7.7/10
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Lovers of the Arctic Circle (1998)

Los amantes del Círculo Polar (original title)
In cold Lapland Finland, under the eternal midnight sun, two ardent lovers reunite once again after a long period apart, governed by a powerful and eloquent circular motif woven by destiny, faith, and love. Can they deny their destiny?

Director:

Julio Medem

Writer:

Julio Medem
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14 wins & 8 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Najwa Nimri ... Ana joven
Fele Martínez ... Otto joven (as Fele Martinez)
Nancho Novo ... Álvaro
Maru Valdivielso ... Olga
Peru Medem Peru Medem ... Otto niño
Sara Valiente Sara Valiente ... Ana niña
Víctor Hugo Oliveira Víctor Hugo Oliveira ... Otto adolescente
Kristel Díaz Kristel Díaz ... Ana adolescente (as Kristel Diaz)
Pep Munné ... Javier (as Pep Munne)
Jaroslaw Bielski Jaroslaw Bielski ... Álvaro Midelman (as Jaroslaw Bielski)
Rosa Morales Rosa Morales ... Sofía
Joost Siedhoff Joost Siedhoff ... Otto Midelman
Beate Jensen Beate Jensen ... Madre de Otto
Petri Heino Petri Heino ... Aki
Outi Alanen ... Mensajera
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Storyline

Otto and Ana are kids when they meet each other. Their names are palindromes. They meet by chance, people are related by chance. A story of circular lives, with circular names, and a circular place (Círculo polar) where the day never ends in the midnight sun. There are things that never end, and Love is one of them. Written by Dul <dpueyos@itpsp.com>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Taglines:

Destiny cannot be denied. See more »

Genres:

Drama | Mystery | Romance

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated R for sexuality and brief language | See all certifications »
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Details

Official Sites:

Official site

Country:

Spain | France

Language:

Spanish | English

Release Date:

28 August 1998 (Spain) See more »

Also Known As:

Lovers of the Arctic Circle See more »

Filming Locations:

Rovaniemi, Finland See more »

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Box Office

Opening Weekend USA:

$10,697, 11 April 1999

Gross USA:

$317,422

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$357,549
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

There's a character named Aki in the movie. This is a direct homage from director Julio Medem to Aki Kaurismaki, which Medem deeply admires. See more »

Goofs

Otto jumps from his plane at 66°33"40' North, 02°55"05' East. These are the geographic coordinates that Ana wrote on her letter to Otto, to mark the location where she was staying in Finland (Rovaniemi). But if he really would have used these coordinates he would have jumped right into the Atlantic Ocean. The (almost) correct location of the cottage where Ana was staying is 66°33"40' North, 25°55"05' East. That is also the same location that the old Otto points out on his map when he and Ana meet each other for the first time in his apartment in Rovaniemi. See more »

Quotes

Otto: Where is my mother?
Ana: Nobody knows, it's up to you.
See more »

Crazy Credits

"En el recuerdo de mi padre" - In memory of my father. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Brows Held High: Room in Rome (2013) See more »

Soundtracks

Sinitaivas
Written by Josef Rixner, Lauri Jauhiainen, George de Godzinsky
Performed by Olavi Virta and The Harmony Sisters
See more »

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User Reviews

Deep into visual poetry
10 April 2004 | by cmmescalonaSee all my reviews

It's really difficult to understand European cinema after watching thousands of American-Big Studio films.

At least that's what looks clearly apparent when I read many of the comments in imdb. But for some of us, who are in contact with a different way of making films, this one excels at the visual poetry from the very start.

And from a cinematographer's point of view, as a real jewel in filmmaking. What Los Amantes is about, is love, and only that. The way this story is portrayed is quite original, in a way some directors have tried and done pretty good jobs (Alejandro González Iñárritu, for instance, in his two films: Amores Perros and 21 Grams). It's a compelling way to explain simple things in reverse. Thoughts, and internal processes are not directly understood or apparent to the viewer. Medem demands his audience to think (remember Abre los Ojos).

It's really sad to think that linear and flat plots that only demand to sit and watch are what most people see as good films. When something catches them out of balance, sometimes they refuse to stay tuned and think.

The revelation, as is with this film, comes at the very end. And it deserves a second session to go through the small details -which are plenty in Medem's work.

It's a long film... some argue. What is a long film when everything is like a whirlpool that draws you in? I don't think this is a long film. Me and many of my friends have pored through it many, many times. So many, in fact, that we had to throw away the original video. A pity, because it was in it's original widescreen version, not as the recently issued dvd that's been murderously cropped.

Whatever it is what you like to see, take a look at this film. It can open a lot of possibilities to widen your taste, and your approach to "long" films.


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