KULT Underground

una della più "antiche" e-zine italiane – attiva dal 1994

And if they’d filmed it in Hollywood?

3 min read

And if they’d filmed it in Hollywood?

Eevi doesn’t want to hear herself say no, even if means she has to kill you. Eevi lives with her big sister Ami but she has no intention of leaving, as her sister would like her to. Eevi gets thrown out but she leaves with the car and her sister’s money and burns the house down while she’s at it. Eevi drives without knowing where she’s going, irrational and upset; the cold of Finland and the solitude she sees from the windows are certainly of no help to her. Eevi picks up a hitchhiker called Jusu and promises him to go wherever he wants to go, even if she arrives alone. Eevi has an accident but despite being injured she manages to get to the house of Anya, the hitchhiker’s girlfriend. Here the story comes to a head and finishes.
The usual thriller? Sure, the escape, the trail of violence, the murder, the capture, the investigation and the ending are academic enough but considering that there is less and less space for inventing a new story of this type, you can appreciate the differences from the photocopied films coming out of the States.
“Neitoperho” (The Collector) is the first feature film by the Finnish director Auli Mantila rightly inserted in the section Venetian
Workshop even if some people screwed up their noses at seeing it alongside more daring documentary films or real experiments. In my opinion, it’s not so easy to start out with a non-original story (the director claims to have been inspired by the novel of the same name by
John Fowles) and make a success of it. OK, we’re at that point again, when I take the opportunity to remind you of the clear difference that exists between European and American cinema. In “The Collector” there is a lesbian but we don’t see her clutching her breasts in the lift after having seen her colleague’s legs, there is a love story between two people, one much older than the other, but we don’t even get two see the two protagonists together, there is a visibly disturbed girl but her medical records don’t reappear miraculously after having been lost for years. Here the film is the story, the looks, the words, the sky and the snow, the hand and the hair, and not the number of police cars or the number of seconds necessary to trace the call!
“The Collector” is also a film of women. The only male that has a real role in the film is shy, and a bit na‹ve and even meets a bad end.
Mantila refuses to accept the label of feminist film (what else would you expect), but that doesn’t mean that female energy doesn’t emanate naturally from all the protagonists. It’s well filmed, well acted and interesting. It is not a work of art, nor does it claim to be one, it has no good quotes, no scenes that are particularly unforgettable but it is enjoyable, enough not to be considered an arty film but not enough for the bigger cinemas. Predicted location: “La vetrina del lunedì” 98/99 at the 7B cinema, Modena. Bets taken!

Michele Benatti

(Tr. Sara McCann)