This movie is about the Estonian War of Independence (1918-1920), specifically the students fighting on the nationalist side, but also shown the conflict between two ideologies (Estonian nationalism and communism).
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Helena Maria Reisner,
Based on a 1935 novel about the Estonian War of Independence (1918-1920) that ensured Estonia's independence, the film tells about a group of students heading to the front to fight the army of Soviet Russia but also to fight alongside their army.Written by
To rate this movie fairly, you have to know near non-existing Estonian cinematography and how underfunded it is.
This particular movie, built up to pure shock value, accomplishes its mission extremely well. There's no clear story, time-line or explanation to most of things - and that's what the Civil war was - big confusion, fear and terror. The actors, young as they are, play very well, they act just like they're supposed to act - pure, childish and confused. I think that older, professional actors wouldn't portray those characters that well.
Don't expect anything Western here, it's a movie about particular thing and stays in its frames. All Nüganen's attempts to incorporate something Hollywoodish fail miserably here and that's probably only bad thing about this movie - the fact that he sometimes tried.
For an Estonian or maybe even Scandinavian, it's a must-see. For others, clear your mind and open yourself to something different, or you'll be disappointed.
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