SXSW Film

Daily reviews and interviews

Reindeer Spotting

SX Global
D: Joonas Neuvonen

If Finnish documentaries are any indication, the Finns are superb ruminators. They spend long winters turning their thoughts inward, examining their lives present and past, and wondering what could have been different if they'd only done this or that. Jani is no different, except this young, likeable man turns to an alternative form of escape from the snowy confines of his hometown of Rovaniemi, in the Arctic Circle. He and his friends find their outlet in Subutex, a narcotic that's used to wean addicts off of heroin in western Europe but has become the drug of choice in Finland. Jani turns to petty crimes to support his habit. In this low-budget but well-crafted production, director Neuvonen deftly takes us inside Jani's downward spiral as he temporarily escapes Finland (thanks to some money stolen from a supermarket store safe) and lives out his dream (albeit in a drug-induced state) of traveling to other countries.


Saturday, March 19, 6:30pm, Alamo Ritz 2

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