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Top 100 Most Anticipated Foreign Films of 2017: #10. Aki Kaurismaki’s The Other Side of Hope

The Other Side of Hope (aka Refugee)

Director: Aki Kaurismaki
Writer: Aki Kaurismaki

Finnish auteur Aki Kaurismaki scored some of the best notices of his impressive career with his last film, 2011’s French language Le Havre. After a five year hiatus, he’s back with his second installment in his ‘port city trilogy,’ The Other Side of Hope (which was initially announced under the working title Refugee). Kaurismaki regular Sakari Kousmanen has been cast as traveling salesman and restauranteur who develops a relationship with a Middle Eastern immigrant in this narrative centering on refugees in Finland (we’re looking forward to seeing how this thematically compares to Michael Haneke’s Happy End).

Cast: Sakari Kousmanen, Shermwan Haji, Janne Hyytiainen, Nuppu Koivu, Ilkka Koivula, Simon Hussein Al-Bazoon

Production Co./Producer(s): Sputnik, Finnish Film Foundation

U.S. Distributor: Rights available.

Release Date: Kaurismaki has competed in the Cannes main competition four times (he snagged a FIPRESCI prize for Le Havre in 2011 and won the Grand Jury Prize in 2002 for The Man Without a Past). Kaurismaki has presented three times in Berlin’s Forum (1990, 1992, and 1999), and for the first time will compete in the main competition at the 2017 Berlin International Film Festival.

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Los Angeles based Nicholas Bell is's Chief Film Critic and covers film festivals such as Sundance, Berlin, Cannes and TIFF. He is part of the critic groups on Rotten Tomatoes, The Los Angeles Film Critics Association (LAFCA), FIPRESCI, the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS) and GALECA. His top 3 for 2023: The Beast (Bonello) Poor Things (Lanthimos), Master Gardener (Schrader). He was a jury member at the 2019 Cleveland International Film Festival.

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