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Finnish documentary film wins in Greece

The director unveiled the mystery of the former owner of her apartment.


Elina Talvensaari’s documentary Lady Time (Neiti Aika) won the Special Jury Award at this year’s Thessaloniki Documentary Festival.

Lady Time charts the life of Sirkka-Liisa Miettinen, a woman who died without relatives at the age of 98. After Talvensaari happened to buy her fully furnished apartment, the director set to work piecing together the former owner’s life from the artefacts, letters and photos she left behind.

Lady Time pieces together the past. Image: SES

Talvensaari was praised for her remarkably assured” work at the helm.

Lady Time by Elina Talvensaari is a beautifully crafted gem of a film, and we were moved by its sensitivity, empathy and inventive stylistic approach,” read the jury’s statement.

Lady Time had its world premiere last year at the prestigious International Documentary Film Festival Amsterdam (IDFA). Additionally, it was bestowed with the Critics’ Choice Award at Helsinki’s DocPoint Festival.

Talvensaari’s previous documentary films include How to Pick Berries (2010), which premiered at the Venice Film Festival and screened at IDFA, and Purity and Danger (2016), which was named Critic’s Choice at DocPoint International Documentary Film Festival.

The latter film attracted praise from esteemed film critic Neil Young, who admired the director’s “tact, maturity and genuine insight” in opening a window into the world of sex workers.

Published on 01.06.2020