Previously at the ICA - Films

In the Field of Dreams, Dir: Teuvo Tulio, 1940

In the Field of Dreams

16 Dec 201121 Dec 2011

Sirkka Salonen, Miss Europe of 1938, stars as an innocent farm hand (she even sings to the animals!) who finds herself at the centre of a whirlpool of jealousy amongst the other servants. Clouds burst with sunlight, butterflies hover over lush blossoming flowerbeds and the shimmering surface of a lake suggests hidden erotic depths as Tulio crafts an exquisite melodrama depicting the end of innocence and the burgeoning sexuality of youth. Hilarious parental musings and jaw-droppingly over-the-top Christian symbolism are thrown into this heady mix as Tulio takes frequent pot-shots at stifling social conventions and uses his gorgeous images to scream his admiration for the vigour of youth.

Tulio is a Finnish national treasure but his films remain tragically unknown in the UK. In the Field of Dreams is one of four of his seminal works restored by the Finnish National Archive and screening in our Teuvo season. Specialising in the much-maligned genre of Melodrama and heavily influenced by Cukor, Lubitsch and Von Sternberg, his spectacular depictions of suffering and sex cast a deep shadow into the works of subsequent directors such as Aki Kaurismäki and Guy Maddin. As Finnish scholar Anu Koivunen explains, "Tulio was both an idealist and a producer of cheap films" which are at once cries for justice and hugely entertaining epics.

Dir: Teuvo Tulio, 1940, Finnish with English subtitles, cert PG, 108 mins

Cast: Sirkka Salonen, Olga Tainio, Kaarlo Oksanen, Kyösti Erämaa

 

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