Take Care of Your Scarf, Tatjana | Chicago Reader

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Finnish director Aki Kaurismaki's 1994 black comedy/road movie is notable for its extreme deadpan: a man locks his annoying mother in a closet, and soon he and a friend are sitting in a cafe, studying their cigarette smoke. Two women—a Russian and an Estonian—figure they can get these “dumb Finns” to drive them to their ship, and the ensuing road trip is both humorous and bleak. The Finns' self-enclosed attitude toward travel is best expressed when one of them, recalling an earlier journey, marvels at his fellow tourists: “A bus full of vodka, and they were looking at ruins.” Kaurismaki's stark, objective use of wide-screen black and white only intensifies the film's depiction of apparently meaningless lives. In Finnish with subtitles. 65 min.

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