French director Jean-Michel Roux discovered Finland in 1998 through the Love & Anarchy Festival, where he was presenting his first feature film. He since came back regularly, in search for inspiration. His discovery of Hugo Simberg’s painting “The Wounded Angel” was a shock, and the starting point for “Angel of the North”, shot in Finnish over a one-year period, from March 2016 to March 2017.
The painter Hugo Simberg never gave an explanation on how to interpret his “Wounded Angel”. What does it mean ? Who are these three characters: two children carrying an angel on a wooden stretcher ?
Angel of the North is an investigation into the Finnish soul, its imagination, its personal and collective subconscious. It is also a journey around the country to meet its inhabitants of all ages and walks of life. They have an intimate bond with this painting which brings out feelings in them that are linked with compassion, death, art, the violence of the world, the existence of angels and hope.
A simple question on the signification of a 1903 painting becomes a nordic portrait opening the doors of the imagination of the Finnish people and the audience.
Angel of the North is a « cinematographic essay », a poetic documentary bringing together confessions and symbolist visions.
The movie is part of the official program of SUOMI FINLAND 100 and will be shown for the first time on the 21st of September at 6.15 pm (Kinopalasti 2) as part of the Helsinki International Film Festival – Love & Anarchy
Production: Kaarle Aho, Kai Nordberg/ Making Movies
Direction and scénario: Jean Michel Roux
Photography: Joonas Pulkkanen
Editing: Denis Bedlow
Sound: Svante Colérus
Music: Tapani Rinne, Biosphere
Distribution: Scanbox Entertainment Finland
More information: https://hiff.fi/en/elokuvat/finnish-angel/