| Our Rating:
L Factor: Lesbian Film
Short Take: Two Finnish coworkers fall in love. One of them is still married to a man and unsure about what she should do.
Alternate Titles: Lapsia ja aikuisia – Kuinka niit
Duration: 102 min
Language: Finland, Sweden/Finnish
MPAA: Not Rated
|Director: Aleksi Salmenpera
Writer: Tuomo Hutri, Pekko Pesonen
Starring: Minna Haapkyla, Kari-Pekka Toivonen, Minttu Mustakallio, Tommi Eronen, Pekka Strang
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Venla (Pekka Strang) works as a psychologist in a fertility clinic, while at the same time, she can’t convince her longtime boyfriend Antero (Kari-Pekka Toivonen) to have a baby with her. He goes as far as secretly getting a vasectomy after she tells him that she will leave him if he won’t have a child. Their relationship is without real intimacy, although they plan to get married. She’s deluded and a bit dazed going through life, and he’s just not honest about his feelings.
Meanwhile, Venla becomes close to Satu (Minttu Mustakallio), a doctor and co-worker, and supports her when she tries to get the clinic to change its policies to supply sperm to single women and lesbian couples. Satu is obviously falling for Venla, and she starts doing the same. But it takes Venla some time to realize whom and what she really wants out of life, and the two women must endure Venla’s confusion.
While Antero and Venla go into counseling together, Satu’s heart is broken, and she is worn down enough to work on a relationship with her brother’s annoying (male) friend (Tommi Eronen). Don’t fear though – the film does make for a happy lesbian ending and an unconventional love story once Venla wakes up.
This was Finland’s official Academy Award submission for Best Foreign Language Film of 2004, and it is quite charming, although a little slow, with likeable female characters and an original twist on the love triangle theme. My additional wish would be for more time with the two women together. (AB)