Mika Kaurismäki’s latest fictional feature-length film Three Wise Men brings drama with a dash of humour in a genuinely rewarding and sometimes hilarious trip through the male psyche.
A chance meeting at a hospital on Christmas Eve brings three old friends together who head out in search of a place to drown their sorrows. Matti is a soon-to-be father crippled by self-doubt. Erkki, the ladies’man, is battling an unnamed illness and is emotionally wounded by his estrangement from his young son. Rauno is an unsuccessful actor trying to reunite with his own son. Their lives have not entirely worked out the way they expected.
The characters manage to bully the owner of a karaoke bar into letting them in, setting the stage for unexpected breakdowns, emotional revelations and possible redemption.
The three principal performers, Kari Heiskanen, Pertti Sveholm and Timo Torikka, were heavily involved in how the script took shape.
During the filming, Kaurismäki relied on the actors to shape the film through improvisation. “The idea for Three Wise Men was born in discussions with the three main actors. Director John Cassavetes and his way of working with improvisation came up, and soon after we decided to experiment and make a film inspired by his method,” says Kaurismäki.
Filmgoers are guaranteed to be left with a sense of satisfaction after viewing Kaurismäki’s amusing drama about masculinity.
See information about screenings www.finnkino.fi
Susan Fourtane – HT
Mikko Stig – Image