New DVD

Autumn Ball - DVD

A group of desperate oddballs from the former U.S.S.R. find their lives intersecting in illuminating and surprising ways as they strive for elusive happiness, in Autumn Ball, Estonian director Veiko Õunpuu's poetic and slightly absurdist tragicomedy. The time and place: far Eastern Europe, just after the fall of the Iron Curtain but before the resurgence in economic growth among the Baltic states. In these environs, we visit one of the bleak government-financed housing estates that scattered the Soviet landscape just prior to Communism's demise. Residents include Theo (Taavi Eelmaa), a cloakroom attendant in a restaurant who "collects" lonely women and enjoys affairs with them; Kaski (Sulevi Peltola), a hairdresser whom many suspect of pedophilia given his unhealthy interest in the schoolgirl Lotta (Iris Persson); Mati (Rain Tolk), a writer sent into a devastating personal crisis (and severe alcoholism) when his wife, Jaana (Mirtel Pohla), leaves him; Maurer (Juhan Ulfsak), an architect slightly more well-to-do than the others, who embodies the bright economic future of Estonia; and Lotta's mother, Laura (Maarja Jakobson), a single parent struggling to make ends meet via hardscrabble labor in a garment factory. Like Õunpuu's premier effort, the 43-minute feature Empty, this material was adapted from the writings of Mati Unt. ~ Nathan Southern, All Movie Guide
Around the Web