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Handcuff King (2002)

Kahlekuningas (original title)
In the 1970s, a 12-year-old boy Esko lives in Tornio, northern Finland, a town bordering Sweden across the river. Esko befriends a Swedish boy, Pate, and learns to share his obsession for ... See full summary »



3 wins & 2 nominations. See more awards »


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Cast overview, first billed only:
Miikka Enbuske ... Esko
Maija Junno ... Aino, Eskon äiti
Heikki Hela ... Toivo, Eskon isä
Sulevi Peltola ... Isoisä
Arttu Kapulainen ... Juhani
Emil Lundberg ... Patrick
Lina Hofverberg ... Helene
Ralph Carlsson ... Patrickin isä
Joe Hamari ... Sauli
Mikko Lamminen ... Eskon kaveri
Joonas Lipponen ... Eskon kaveri
Petteri Siimes ... Eskon kaveri
Ville Kotajärvi ... Eskon kaveri
Mika Koski ... Kenneth
Jouni Alasaukko-oja ... Ruotsalaisen jengin jäsen


In the 1970s, a 12-year-old boy Esko lives in Tornio, northern Finland, a town bordering Sweden across the river. Esko befriends a Swedish boy, Pate, and learns to share his obsession for Harry Houdini, the legendary escape artist. While standing handcuffed on the railway bridge, contemplating a stunt jump into the icy river, he reminisces the dramatic events of the summer before. For the viewer, his problems are presented with warm humour # gang fights, feeling guilty for lying, Father losing his job, Mother losing her nerves, not to mention Grandfather having lost his willingness to speak since a traumatic war experience 30 years earlier. Written by Markku Kuoppamäki

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Elämässä pitää oppia tekemään asiat silleen oikealla tavalla väärin


Comedy | Drama | Family


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Official Sites:

Official site [Finland]


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Release Date:

4 October 2002 (Finland)  »

Also Known As:

Handcuff King  »


Box Office


FIM 10,500,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:


Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Featured in Miikkan kahleet (2004) See more »


Veckans affärer
Written by John Holm
Performed by John Holm
Multitone Musikförlag Ab
Warner/Chappell Music Sweden
See more »

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User Reviews

Young boy turns from Rommel to Houdini
10 July 2010 | by See all my reviews

A teenager boy, Esko, with a vivid imagination lives near the border of Finland and Sweden. After a trip to Sweden, he gets into disagreement his old friends, and he meets Patrik, a boy across the border. They share similar interests to two different people: Esko is living through the tales about German war-hero Rommel, and Patrik is trying solve the secrets of Houdini, great handcuff king. By and by, Esko starts to get more interested in Houdini's tale.

Esko's family (father, mother, brother, and grandpa) live in the same house in rural area, near Tornio. All the other family members seem to live a little bit disconnected lives from Esko, they are part of the tales of Rommel, but also stories of Esko turning into a handcuff king.

Story seems rather simple, and all the technical parts do not promise a quality film. However, the persons are fascinating, and the story goes on forward smoothly. Also, a peculiar anecdote is that, the young leading actors are one-time actors on silver-screens, by far. Amateurs they are, but do a nice job, taking the stories of Rommel and Houdini to the end. There is also an encouraging message to deliver, but that is for every viewer to find out.

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