Sin Sauna

Sauna

The year is 1595 and Sweden and Russia have decided to stop fighting. About darn tootin’ time — this battle has been going on for 25 years, and it’s left Finland little more than a semi-populated mud puddle.

Sauna

Two brothers — one whose been doing the war thing for the entire time, and another who was in school trying to become a teacher — are part of a border recognition treaty detail (complete with rule-breaking Russians), assigned to make maps of the land to be designated to both countries, so each side will know which Starbuck’s™ belongs to whom.

Sauna

Seemed easy enough. But the older brother is prone to mood swings, stabs someone 73 times (I counted) in the chest to teach him a valuable lesson about war. This number is significant as he’s killed 73 people during the war. I’d have rounded up.

Sauna

The younger brother is appalled by the emotionless/remorseless war-time behavior, but goes along just the same. They end up in a dark sauna in the middle of the swamp they’ve been mapping. To enter means you have to face up to all your sins, which could be a problem given all the atrocities the older brother has committed in the fine name of war. Once inside he’s tended to by a dark figure who grabs the guy’s face and black stuff starts pouring out as he screams. I’d scream, too, no matter which hole was leaking black stuff.

Sauna

I didn’t know how to interpret this. Was it a metaphor? Where’d his face go? Did it freeze and fall off in the snow? And is that black stuff really Finland beer? If so, where can I get some? A parable of sorts, Sauna (2008) qualifies as art, so I guess I better refer to it as a “film.” Just wish I knew what the hell it was about.

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