Mika Ronkainen, Merja Aakko Talk ‘All Our Sins,’ Finland’s Bible Belt, Landscape

Variety | 1/9/2019 | John Hopewell
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In “Finnish Blood, Swedish Heart,” Finland’s Mika Ronkainen, best known for his documentaries – 2003’s “Screaming Men,” 2009’s “Freetime Machos” – portrays the dislocation of 1970s Finnish emigrants in Sweden via a father-and-son musical road movie.

For “All the Sins,” a Nordisk Film & TV Fond Prize entry written with Merja Aakko, Ronkainen takes very much the same elements – a genre, here the murder mystery; a near documentary depiction, here of small town bigotry; and cornerstone family relationships – and recasts them in a drama series, awash in a sense of (unmerited) shame and guilt, with a contemporary feminist turn. The result is a crime thriller which works on several levels.

Sins - Nordic - Noir - Body - Barn

“All the Sins” begins in classic Nordic Noir with a body winched upside down in a barn as a shadowy assassin draws a knife seemingly to dispatch the victim. But, diverging from the Nordic Noir playbook, we never see the corpse. After a ten-year absence, Detective Lauri Räiha (Johannes Holopainen, “Unknown Soldier”) is dispatched to investigate the murders of two men, both pillars of the ultra-conservative Laestadian religious community, in Varjakka, a small northern Finnish town where he grew up. He is accompanied by a senior officer, Sanna Tervo (Maria Sid, “Donna Paukku” ).

But why does Räiha have such huge anger-management issues, seething, white knuckles clenched, in a therapy class, after hitting his boyfriend? And why does Tervo feel compelled to sleep with the first man she meets, and the second? It is these character mysteries which, as much as the murders, which transforms “All the Sins” into compulsive viewing.

Series - Sins - Finnish - VOD - Service

A six-part series “All the Sins” is lead produced for Finnish VOD service Elisa Viihde by Ilkka Matila at Finland’s MRP Matila Rohr Productions, a company which is behind one of Finland’s most ambitious movies, “The Eternal Road.”

Variety talked to screenwriters...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Variety
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