The Winter War (film)
|The Winter War|
The Finnish DVD cover
|Directed by||Pekka Parikka|
|Produced by||Marko Röhr|
|Written by||Pekka Parikka,
Mika Heikki Paavilainen,
|Release date(s)||30 November 1989 (Finland)|
|Running time||Original: 195 minutes
TV series: 265 minutes
The Winter War (original title in Finnish: Talvisota) is a 1989 Finnish war film directed by Pekka Parikka, based on The Winter War, a novel by Antti Tuuri. It tells the story of a Finnish infantry regiment "JR 23", which consists almost solely of men from Southern Ostrobothnia, focusing mainly on a platoon of reservists from Kauhava. The film was released in Finland and Sweden on the 50th anniversary of the beginning of the Winter War.
The Winter War tells the story of two brothers Paavo and Martti Hakala in their experience during the war. Set during World War II after Germany invades Poland in September of 1939, the Soviet Union attacks Finland in November of the same year. Finnish reservists leave their homes to go to war. The film focuses on two farmers from the municipality of Kauhava in the province of Pohjanmaa/Ostrobothnia, brothers Martti and Paavo Hakala, serving in a Finnish platoon.
- Taneli Mäkelä – Private Martti Hakala
- Vesa Vierikko – 2nd Lieutenant Jussi Kantola
- Timo Torikka – Private Pentti Saari
- Heikki Paavilainen – Private Vilho Erkkilä
- Antti Raivio – Corporal Erkki Somppi
- Esko Kovero – Medical Corporal Juho Pernaa
- Martti Suosalo – Private Arvi Huhtala
- Markku Huhtamo – Private Aatos Laitila
- Matti Onnismaa – Corporal Veikko Korpela
- Konsta Mäkelä – Private Paavo Hakala
- Tomi Salmela – Private Matti Ylinen
- Samuli Edelmann – Private Mauri Haapasalo
- Vesa Mäkelä – Lieutenant Yrjö Haavisto
- Aarno Sulkanen – Captain Sihvo - Battalion commander
- Kari Kihlström – Lieutenant Jorma Potila
- Esko Nikkari – Private Yrjö 'Ylli' Alanen
The film depicts a wide array of genuine wartime vehicles and artillery; and when these were not available, replicas were used. These include the T-26 light tank, the Tupolev SB fast bomber, the Polikarpov I-16, and the 37 mm PstK/36 anti-tank gun. Animated special effects were used to simulate tracer projectiles.
At the Jussi Awards (Finland's premier film awards) the same year, Talvisota received six awards:
- Best Actor: Taneli Mäkelä
- Best Co-ordinator: Raimo Mikkola
- Best Direction: Pekka Parikka
- Best Music: Juha Tikka
- Best Sound Recording: Paul Jyrälä and team
- Best Supporting Actor: Vesa Vierikko
An extended TV version was also made, consisting of five episodes, each with a running time of over 50 minutes. The series has been aired three times on Finnish TV (in 1991, 1999 and 2009).
The original theatrical version was released on DVD by Finnkino in 2001. The DVD includes Swedish and English subtitles.
The original theatrical version was released on two DVDs by ICD Studio in 2009. The DVD includes English and Korean subtitles.
The extended TV version was released on two DVDs by Finnkino in 2010. This release doesn't have any subtitles and it is only available in Finland.
The abridged American version was released on DVD by Belle & Blade Studios. The DVD includes hard-coded English subtitles. In addition to missing plot lines, several reviewers of the DVD complained about bad picture quality.
The abridged version was released on DVD by Scanbox Entertainment in 2011.
- Rukajärven tie a film of another Antti Tuuri novel about Finland's Continuation War.
- The Unknown Soldier (1955 film)