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Keskea rõõmud (1987)

Five people who have recently reached their middle-ages are driving through Estonia to visit a famous witch-therapist to get rid of their problems. But isn't it just weariness of life that ... See full summary »


Lembit Ulfsak


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Tõnu Kark ... Tõnu Loorits
Maria Klenskaja Maria Klenskaja ... Pille Loorits
Kaie Mihkelson Kaie Mihkelson ... Helena
Ülle Kaljuste Ülle Kaljuste ... Silva Raud
Lembit Ulfsak ... Hubert Raud
Heino Mandri ... Uncle Raul
Arvo Kukumägi ... Farmer Jüri
Hendrik Toompere Jr. Hendrik Toompere Jr. ... Student Ott
Leida Sibul Leida Sibul ... Silva's mother
Enn Kraam Enn Kraam ... RAI-Inspector
Vello Janson Vello Janson ... RAI-Inspector
Paul Laasik Paul Laasik ... Lieutenant Kaseorg
Roman Baskin Roman Baskin ... Tõnu's customer
Aire Johanson Aire Johanson ... Jüri's wife
Merle Talvik Merle Talvik ... Clerk at the mall


Five people who have recently reached their middle-ages are driving through Estonia to visit a famous witch-therapist to get rid of their problems. But isn't it just weariness of life that bothers the people whose life has gone into a deep routine ? The somber-funny road movie gives a good review of life, people and daily problems in Estonia in the end of the Soviet period. Written by Peterzell

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Comedy | Drama




Soviet Union


Estonian | Russian

Release Date:

6 July 1987 (Estonia) See more »

Also Known As:

Radosti srednego vozrasta See more »

Company Credits

Production Co:

Tallinnfilm See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs


| (video)

Sound Mix:



See full technical specs »

Did You Know?


The car that Ülle Kaljuste is driving is ZAZ 1102 Tauria and it appeared on the market a year after "Keskea rõõmud" was made. The car in the movie was a test-car and Ülle Kaljuste was officially declared to be a test-driver. See more »


Farmer: What happened?
Tõnu Loorits: You see, the roads around here are so shitty that our car couldn't handle them!
Farmer: Then why are you coming here, if the roads are so shitty?
See more »


Featured in Disko ja tuumasõda (2009) See more »

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User Reviews

Bitter Sweet Road Trip
28 June 2017 | by proviantSee all my reviews

Two married couples from higher middle class and their one still unmarried friend travel through Estonia to meet famous witch doctor. I consider this to be the only real Estonian road movie - there are some others ('186 Kilometers'), but not quite "Keskea rõõmud" (Midlife Joys). The film is directorial debut for Estonian acting legend Lembit Ulfsak, who took over directing when original director (and author of the screenplay) Valentin Kuik fell ill. The inexperience of the director shows, but some of this is definitely the fault of underdeveloped script. The characters and some of their motions are unexplained, some side characters appear out of nowhere and having conversations with main characters and then they disappear, and we - the audience - will never know the relations between these people. Originally the film was intended to be more psychological drama, but new director turned it more lighthearted comedy. Still the the psychological tension between main characters can be felt burning underneath.

All together, it is a nice warm film with that perfect road movie charm. The chemistry between the five main actors is wonderful, making the sarcastic dry humor sound not so bitter but rather sweet. Occasionally shaky cam and awkward camera angel only add more warmth to the sun sun filled experience. Still the only (and very big) flaw of the film is heavily underdeveloped script.

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