The Estonian Best Foreign Language Film of the 2018 Academy Awards. A romantic and dark folklore for the mature.
|Cast||Rea Lest, Jörgen Liik, Arvo Kukumägi|
|Country||Estonia, Netherlands, Poland|
|International Sales||Homeless Bob Production|
In this tale of love and survival in 19th century Estonia, peasant girl Liina longs for village boy Hans, but Hans is inexplicably infatuated by the visiting German baroness that possesses all that he longs for. For Liina, winning Hans’ requited love proves incredibly complicated in this dark, harsh landscape where spirits, werewolves, plagues, and the devil himself converge, where thievery is rampant, and where souls are highly regarded, but come quite cheap. With alluring black and white cinematography, Rainer Sarnet vividly captures these motley lives as they toil to exist—is existence worth anything if it lacks a soul?
A film based on the Estonian bestseller novel "Rehepapp". Captivated by the novel's concept of animism, in which all things have a soul, the director portrays characters that will do anything to fulfill their greed in a dark comedy taste; selling their soul to the devil, living with no soul, and fighting in order to gain a soul. The film caught the attention of film festivals worldwide with its high contrast black-and-white visuals that created a magical world both beautiful and terrifying.
In his 48 years of existence, Rainer Sarnet has directed 5 films, lived with 3 women, accumulated about 10 friends, passionately loved Fassbinder, directed theatre plays by Przybyszewski, Gorky, and Jelinek, been deemed a wonder child at film school and had got the opportunity to defend this ambitious title only 15 years later with his film “November”. The mystery is still out there. Sarnet mostly writes his own scripts but usually bases them on some early text, often a literary classic. He is captivated by the different faces of the human soul. Sarnet sees that one must focus on that which upholds man and culture so that they do not become devalued, so that they don’t start placing value in the banal.