Friday, April 10, 2015

The Man Without a Past

The Man Without a Past (dir. Aki Kaurismäki, 2002) is a Finnish film about a man (M, played by Markku Peltola) who suffers a terrible beating, loses his memory, and remakes his life. It is the first Finnish film I’ve seen. It is quietly, strangely funny.

Is there something deeply Finnish about the film’s dark, awkward humor? My guess is yes . The Man Without a Past reminds me of Robert Bresson (whom Kaurismäki acknowledges as an influence on his work) and, of all things, Napoleon Dynamite (dir. Jared Hess, 2004). The sprawling subdivision of Kaurismäki Heights is now part of our Netflix queue.

Thanks to Fresca, who seems to be an infallible recommender of films.

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