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Lapland Odyssey 
Written by: on February 17th, 2013

Theatrical Release Date:
Finland / Iceland / Sweden, 2010
Director: Dome Karukoski
Writer: Pekko Pesonen
Cast: Pamela Tola, Jussi Vatanen, Jasper Pääkkönen, Timo Lavikainen, Konsta Mäkelä, Kari Ketonen

DVD released: January 8th, 2013
Approximate running time: 96 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Anamorphic Widescreen
Rating: NR
Sound: Dolby Digital Stereo Finish
Subtitles: English
DVD Release: Artsploitation Films
Region Coding: Region Free
Retail Price: $24.99

Synopsis: An unemployed slackers is forced to go to great lengths after putting a great strain on his relationship with his girlfriend. Unable to complete the most simplest of tasks, his girlfriend gives him one last chance to redeem himself. Will he be able to finally see things through or will his inability to see things through distract him once again?

Content wise, Lapland Odyssey is cross between crass humor and romantic comedy. With the focus being more on the crass humor, which is often derived from the outrageous situations that the film’s protagonist Janne and his friends find themselves in as they try to accomplish the one thing that needs to be accomplished to save Janne’s girlfriend from leaving.

And though the film’s main focus is Janne’s odyssey to save his relationship with his girlfriend. One of this film’s most pleasant surprises is how is lets other characters breathe and shine in the spotlight. Most notably Janne’s two friends, who are accompanying him on this most absurd road trip.

Some of the more outlandish moments that occur along the way include Janne being man handled by a women’s ruby team. And a scene in which Janne and his friends help slaughter a deer for a Russian family that hit the deer with their car. Fortunately this is just the tip of the iceberg as this latter scenes escalates Janne and his two friends are chased by a naked Russian man, who shots at them with his paint ball gun.

From a production stand point, just about every area of this film scores high marks. The cinematography does s superb job showing off the scenic ice capped landscapes. Pacing things always move along at a nice clip and performance wise the entire are all very enjoyable in their respective roles. With this film’s most memorable performance coming from Kari Ketonen in the role of a man named Pikku-Mikko. This character has long desired to take Janne girlfriend from him and when the opportunity arises to dives in with reckless abandon.

Foreign films with comedy in the mix can often be a tricky proposition, since far too often humor can be regionalized. Which then leads to said material not having that broad of reach beyond its native audience. Thankfully in the case of Lapland Odyssey there is no bridge that needs to be gapped, since the events which unfold onscreen have a universal appeal that translate well no where you come from.

The DVD:

Artsploitation Films presents Lapland Odyssey in an anamorphic widescreen that retains this films intended 2.35:1 ‘scope’ aspect ratio. Colors are nicely saturated, black levels look very good, details look crisp and there are no problems with compression.

This release comes with one audio option, a Dolby Digital stereo mix in Finish and non removable English subtitles have been included with this release. The audio sounds clear, clean and balanced throughout.

Extras for this release include a short film titled ‘Burungo’ (13 minutes 31 seconds – anamorphic widescreen, in Finish with English subtitles) and a eight page booklet with liner notes about the film and a text based interview with director Dome Karukoski. Also included with this release are trailers for other films available or soon to be released by Artsploitation Films. Overall Lapland Odyssey gets a strong release from Artsploitation Films.

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