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Finnish filmmaker Tia Kouvo makes an impressive feature debut with this unconventional family dramedy, based on her own 2018 short film, which mixes familiar holiday movie tropes with a distinctly droll, dark humor and sharp observational wit. As sisters Susanna (Ria Kataja, FORCE OF HABIT) and Helena (Elina Knihtilä, THE GOOD SON) gather with their families for the annual Christmas celebration at their parents' remote home, deep in the snowy Finnish countryside, the atmosphere is anything but cozy. Tensions rise in the cramped house as Kouvo paints a vivid portrait of each family member: the grandfather with a drinking problem (Tom Wentzel), his wife of 58 years (Leena Uotila), Helena, Susanna and her disaffected husband (Jarkko Pajunen), plus the sisters' children. Taking a largely removed perspective, the camera captures small moments that come together to form a lovingly crafted analysis of a modern, multigenerational family. Official Selection, 2023 Berlin International Film Festival, New Directors/New Films. DIR/SCR Tia Kouvo; PROD Jussi Rantamäki, Emilia Haukka. Finland/Sweden, 2023, color, 114 min. In Finnish with English subtitles. NOT RATED

No AFI Member passes accepted.

114 Minutes

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