Finnish-Syrian LGBT romantic drama A MOMENT IN THE REEDS releases December 4th, 2018
By Oliver Carnay
The feature debut of Finnish writer/director Mikko Makela is a moving gay romance between a young Finnish academic and a struggling Syrian refugee, set against an idyllic Finnish summer. Filled with nuanced and sexually charged performances from the film’s two openly gay leads, Finnish theatre actorJanne Puustinen, and openly gay Syrian actor Boodi Kabbani (who fled Syria and eventually settled in Finland, where he is based – he is one of the very few openly gay Syrian actors in the world), A MOMENT IN THE REEDS is a potent, inherently political, and remarkably mature exploration of an LGBT immigrant refugee’s experience in today’s world.
Mikko Makela’s stunning debut explores the relationship between two men, set against an idyllic Finnish summer. Whilst visiting his estranged father, Leevi meets Tareq, a handsome Syrian immigrant employed to restore the family lake house. Leevi’s father departs for the city, leaving the two men alone in the beautiful remote countryside and enabling them to act on their impulses and the chemistry that clearly exists between them. Far removed from their everyday lives, the only immediate threat to the men’s relationship is the eventual return of Leevi’s father. But there’s also Tareq’s complex relationship with his family back in Syria. Makela sensitively explores the perspectives of both men, who long for some human connection, acceptance and a place to call home. Locating marginalised characters at the forefront of the story, Makela’s film is a very welcome and refreshingly frank portrait of contemporary Finnish society.
One of the first LGBT-themed films made in Finland, Makela’s intimate drama places at its center the freedom and acceptance of sexual and ethnic minorities, amidst the backdrop of breathtaking Finnish lake country.
Indiewire called it “one of the best queer international films of 2018,” and Edge said the film is “a fresh new voice in queer cinema…pitch perfect performances.” Film Inquiry wrote “one of the most moving gay romances of recent years…full of sexually charged, intimate moments.”
After world premiering at the 2017 London Film Festival and a year of critical success on the worldwide festival circuit and opening theatrically to critical acclaim in Finland this past summer, A MOMENT IN THE REEDS will be available for all U.S. and Canadian audiences.
Finnish-Syrian LGBT romantic drama A MOMENT IN THE REEDS releases December 4th, 2018 in the U.S. and Canada on VOD and digital platforms including iTunes, Amazon, Google Play and Youtube Movies, and in the U.S. on DVD and Blu-ray through Amazon. Released by Wild Beast Productions.