AKI KAURISMÄKI | FINLAND, GERMANY | 2023 | 81 MIN | NR | FINNISH
Masters of Cinema selection from PFF32! Finnish director Aki Kaurismäki returns with a love story beautifully encapsulating his deadpan wit, visual ingenuity, and quiet humanism. Ansa (Alma Pöysti) is stuck in a cycle of dead-end jobs. Holappa (Jussi Vatanen) is a construction worker who struggles to keep his drinking in check. Though they share an immediate connection, Ansa and Holappa’s tentative courtship is marked by a series of missed connections. Meanwhile, they both must work to maintain hope in the face of uncertain employment and anxiety-inducing news burbling over the radio. As ever, Kaurismäki is keenly attuned to the precarious situation of his nation’s working class, yet Fallen Leaves maintains a lightness of tone, thanks to Kaurismäki’s characteristic humor and eye for bright, striking compositions. Rumored to be the master director’s final film, Fallen Leaves made a triumphant splash at the Cannes Film Festival, where it took home the prestigious Jury Prize.
Cast: Alma Pöysti, Jussi Vatanen, Alina Tomnikov, Marti Suosalo