STUPID YOUNG HEART by Selma Vilhunen Selected as Finnish Oscar Candidate

Stupid Young Heart is directed by Selma Vihunen and written by Kirsikka Saari. Vilhunen and Saari’s short film Do I Have to Take Care of Everything? was nominated for the Academy Award for the Best Short Film Live Action in 2014.

The story follows teenagers Lenni and his girlfriend Kiira as they embark on a new relationship and find themselves expecting a child. Under the pressure of becoming the Father he never had, Lenni goes in search of the role model and happens upon a local man named Janne - an extreme right-wing activist - who sees the confused, isolated Lenni as easy prey for recruitment. 

The jury described the film as a humane and unusual love story of two East Helsinki natives. The jury praised the strong but sensitive performances of the two young actors, where especially Jere Ristseppä handles the weight of the role with rich nuance.

Stupid Young Heart was produced by Elli Toivoniemi and Venla Hellstedt from Tuffi Films Oy. The film is a co-production between Finland, Sweden and the Netherlands. The world premiere of Stupid Young Heart was at the Toronto International Film Festival in 2018. Its domestic premiere was on the 12th of October, 2018, distributed by Nordisk Film. The film won the Crystal Bear prize at the Berlin International Film Festival, and also Best Screenplay at the Finnish Jussi Awards.

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Karoliina Dwyer from THE YELLOW AFFAIR will be attending TIFF from 5-11 Sep.

Steven Bestwick