Prisoners of the Ground

Film Information:


Prisoners of the Ground




Stella van Voorst van Beest






89 min


  • GUIÓN: Stella van Voorst van Beest
  • FOTOGRAFÍA: Sander Snoep
  • MONTAJE: Jan de Coster
  • PRODUCCIÓN: Denis Vaslin


  • Volya Films
  • Denis Vaslin
  • Mauritsweg 56
  • 3012 JX Rotterdam, The Netherlands
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  • F +31 10 437 5934
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According to the scientist we see at the beginning of this documentary, light is a determining factor for each and every feeling we experience: a bigger or smaller light exposure can cause either happiness or melancholy. In her first film, Stella van Voorst van Beest seems to be following this idea in her baffled journey through the obscure melancholy of Finnish tango, but –paradoxically– the result is luminous: every character, place, landscape, every chord, every story, all correspond to the conquest of a strange planet, even for the experts on Argentine tango. As if it were an eccentric collection of samples, there are wax puppets from local celebrities, tango karaoke, tragic stories, a sculptor who transforms his entourage into a zoo that’s made of scraps, and several dancing halls with a strange atmosphere this documentary records and sustains with great accuracy. Also, and this is not a minor detail, Prisoners of the Ground can be seen as the perfect appendix for the work of the Kaurismäki brothers, especially regarding its relationship with music.

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