Sauna (2008 film)

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Still from Sauna (2008 film)...

Sauna, AKA Filth and Evil Rising (2008 film)

Summary

In 16th-century Finland, a merciless warrior and his brother accompany a joint Russian/Swedish expedition to mark the post-war boundary between their countries, and encounter vengeful ghosts around a mysterious sauna in an abandoned monastery in the middle of a swamp.

Details

  • Release Date: 2008
  • Country/Language: Finland/Czech Republic, in Finnish, Swedish, and Russian with English subtitles
  • Genres/Technical: Suspense, Supernatural Thriller, Horror, War, Experimental/Art
  • Runtime: 1 hr 23 min
  • Starring: Ville Virtanen, Tommi Eronen, Viktor Klimenko
  • Director: Antti-Jussi Annila
  • Writer: Iiro Küttner
  • Producer/Production Co: Bronson Club, Etic Pictures, Yleisradio (YLE)
  • View Trailer: (link)
  • IMDb page: {link)

Ratings

MPAA Ratings

  • Rated: (unrated) (perhaps equivalent to R, for Violence, Adult Content, Nudity, Profanity)

Tentacle Ratings

A rough measure of how "Lovecraftian" the work is:

  • S____ (One Tentacle: Debateably Lovecraftian; has almost no direct connection to Lovecraft's work)

Not exactly a "Lovecraftian" film in the sense of being based on any of Lovecraft's work or containing references to his creations, though some viewers may find the location and atmosphere perhaps suggestive of Lovecraft's work (an "Eldritch Location" film).

Note: This rating is not intended as a measure of quality, merely of how closely related to Lovecraftian "Weird" fiction the work is.

Reviews

Review Links:

  • Horror-Movie-a-Day, (link) - "It's somewhat of a difficult movie to get a handle on already... it will be even doubly so if you are watching it without your full attention and missing even a line or two of crucial dialogue.... This truly is the rare film that I like more for technical reasons than creative ones...."
  • Christianne Benedict at Krell Laboratories (link) - "... it's fascinating for showing a completely unfamiliar time and place, a feeling that's amplified from the filmmakers' choice of a desaturated color palette and a desolate, starkly beautiful landscape."
  • James Mudge at BeyondHolywooddotcom (link) - "... the film is an exercise in ambiguous, creeping, long haired dread that eschews obvious shocks in favour of psychological chills. This approach, coupled with the gorgeously atmospheric and melancholy scenery, works very well, and the film is captivating and sinister throughout..."
  • Simon Reed at Quiet Earth (link) - "The film is just that, confusing and haphazard, the narrative is all over the place. People come and go, die and scream, look meaningfully into the camera and whisper lines... The pacing is a huge problem as parts seem to lag and then suddenly there's exposition and action ... that don't ever really conclude or go anywhere specific. By the end it seemed the director was running out of film and just said, "Okay gang, let's finish-up with a fountain of blood and an ambiguous voiceover!". The film purports to be a study of violence, innocence, guilt and redemption but in the end it's just another faceless monster bellowing in the woods."

Synopsis

 Spoiler Section (Highlight to Read)

As a 25-year war between Russia and Sweden concludes, two brothers who are part of an effort to outline new border accords become undone by their actions, and their mistreatment of a young woman during their journey.


Notes

Comments, Trivia, Dedication

Keeper Notes