Autumn Ball

Autumn Ball

Movie: Autumn Ball
Director: Veiko Õunpuu
Produced by:
Released By: Strand Releasing
MPAA Rating:

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, a cloakroom attendant in a restaurant who “collects” lonely women and enjoys affairs with them, Kaski, a hairdresser whom many suspect of pedophilia given his unhealthy interest in the schoolgirl Lotta, Mati, a writer sent into a devastating personal crisis when his wife, Jaana, leaves him, Maurer, an architect slightly more well-to-do than the others, who embodies the bright economic future of Estonia, and Lotta’s mother, Laura, 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.

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