The Other Side of Hope

The Other Side of Hope // Supplied
The Other Side of Hope // Supplied

Directed by Aki Kaurismaki

Oct. 3, 6:30 pm, Landmark Cinemas 9 City Centre

Another dead (as-a-fish-in-a) pan dish from the top chef of wry, retro-looking movies. It’s an immensely powerful culture-clash dramedy where a Syrian stowaway, Khaled (Sherwan Kaji) and a budding restaurateur, Wikström (Sakari Kuosmanen), eventually cross paths in Helsinki. Finland’s bureaucratic refugee-admission system is indifferent; Khaled’s story is harrowing. A fusion-food experiment’s bound to go wrong; a cross-border smuggling plan has to go right.

American rock’s joyously covered by middle-aged bands in hole-in-the-wall clubs; a ragtag band of nationalist fascists roams the near-empty streets. The film nudges together many other little contrasts, confusions, and moments of dread. A marvellously understated take on Europe’s migrant crisis, with two men searching for safe harbours in their lives.

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