Tom of Finland

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Finland | 2017 | 115 minutes | Dome Karukoski

A captivating biopic of artist Touko Laaksonen, aka Tom of Finland, one of the most influential gay artists of the 20th century, whose trailblazing homoerotic illustrations were created while homosexuality in his country was illegal. Winner of the FIPRESCI prize at the Gothenburg Film Festival.

Friday, May 26, 2017

  • Purchased Tickets
  • Limited Availability
  • On Standby
  • Matinee

Saturday, May 27, 2017

  • Purchased Tickets
  • Limited Availability
  • On Standby
  • Matinee

If we now think of Finland as one of those liberal socialist utopias Scandinavia seems to specialize in, it wasn't always the case; as LGBT rights go, in the 1950s it was as repressive as everywhere else. One gay man's rebellion took the form of art: the aggressively, frankly idealized hypermasculine drawings by Touko Laaksonen—soon to be known as Tom of Finland—who fought and sent up the stereotype of homosexuals as feminine by going as far as he could in the opposite direction. This slyly witty, and lightly kinky, crowd-pleaser traces his path from outcast to icon (he died in 1991) and his art's path from being illegal and hidden to being celebrated in museum retrospectives and even on stamps. Pekka Strang plays the artist over a span of half a century. Military service in World War II solidified Tom's taste for uniforms, especially the head-to-toe black leather then associated with motorcyclists, and the men in his drawings took on their immediately recognizable characteristics: broad facial features, a V-shaped torso, painted-on pants (if any), and above all that thick '70s mustache—the look that launched an entire queer subculture. In a tour de force, Pekka Strang plays the artist over a span of half a century. 

Director Biography 

Filmmaker Dome Karukoski has worked in many different areas in the industry—from in front of the camera as an actor to behind the scenes as a writer, producer, and director, Karukoski has done it all. He is best-known as a director for his films The Home of the Dark Butterflies (2008) and Lapland Odyssey (2010).

Sponsored by Babeland

  • Director: Dome Karukoski
  • Principal Cast: Pekka Strang, Lauri Tilkanen, Werner Daehn, Jessica Grabowsky
  • Premiere Status: Seattle
  • Country: Finland
  • Year: 2017
  • Running Time: 115 minutes
  • Producer: Aleksi Bardy, Miia Haavisto, Annika Sucksdorff
  • Screenplay: Aleksi Bardy
  • Cinematographers: Lasse Frank Johannessen
  • Editors: Harri Ylönen
  • Music: Lasse Enersen, Hildur Guðnadóttir
  • Website: Official Film Website
  • Awards: Goteborg Film Festival 2017 (FIPRESCI Award)
  • Filmography: The Grump (2014); Lapland Odyssey (2010); Heart of a Lione (2013); Forbidden Fruit (2009); The Home of Dark Butterflies (2008); Beauty and the Bastard (2005)
  • Language: Finnish, German, English
  • Has Subtitles: Yes
  • Format: DCP
  • US Distributor: Kino Lorber
  • International Sales: Protagonist Pictures