Director Aleksi Mäkelä works real movie magic into a story that is based upon an actual event. As the story unfolds, we get to know characters that are dummied down a tiny bit for the sake of clarity in the comedy. The director grabs us with brilliant choices of images and authentic tasting nuances from the seventies. Another thing serving the viewer brilliantly is that every single cast member trusted with a bigger role has their moments where they truly shine.
The main character role, played by Kari Hietalahti is mentally in a very desperate place and it is beautiful to see Kari bring in that extra intensity a few times. Riding on his wave with much more laid back supporting roles, especially the two pilots, played by Aake Kalliala and Jussi Vatanen, plus the stewardess Elina Keinonen give us so much soul in their performances that it is simply wonderful to be in their presence.
The Hijack That Went South is an action comedy with lots of thriller elements, focusing on the main character's ups and downs. He's no winner or a hero and that's where the limitations of this movie appear to be. I can warmly recommend it and I'd estimate that you'll enjoy it the most on a day when you want to enjoy a very well told movie. And for a day when you're more looking for an adrenaline kick, pick one where the blood sprays and people die from left to right.
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