Strong Opening for Antti Jokinen’s Purge in Finnish Cinemas

Antti Jokinen’s PURGE was greeted with convincing admission numbers and great reviews when it opened this weekend in its home country Finland.

Jokinen’s PURGE is an adaption for screen based on one of the most acknowledged Finnish books of recent years, Sofi Oksanen’s bestselling and prizewinning novel, which sold 250.000 copies in Finland, so the anticipation was high.

Anticipation was met with satisfaction, when over 30.000 cinemagoers flocked to the see the film in its opening weekend. The film went straight to No. 1 in the B.O. chart, grossing in more than EUR 299.000.

Head of Theatrical Distribution, Nordisk Film in Finland, Katarina Nyman about the release: “PURGE had a strong weekend, accompanied by fantastic reviews. Despite the tough theme and quality drama genre, film managed to pull in blockbuster numbers. “Also the audience response was fantastic: according the exit poll 90% stated they will recommend this movie to their friends. This predicts long legs for PURGE.”

PURGE will have its international premiere at Busan International Film Festival in October.

Sofi Oksanen’s PURGE has also received much acclaim internationally. In France alone it has sold 353.000 copies and it’s currently shortlisted for Le Prix des lecteurs du Livre de Poche. Sunday Times in the UK chose PURGE as one of the best books of 2010. PURGE has won the Nordic Council Literature Prize 2010, the European Book Prize 2010, Prix Femina Ètranger 2010 as well as the 2010 FNAC prize and it has been translated into 40 languages.

Below reads some of the reviews of the newly premiered film:

“Powerful. Heart-stopping. Ravishing. Brilliant. PURGE is the event of the year in the Finnish cinema.”
Tuomas Riskala / Iltalehti

“Full of great performances. A maker and an adaptation that is up to the par of the novel by Oksanen.”
Minna Karila / MTV3

“A masterpiece as a movie.”
Tapani Jussila / Pohjolan Sanomat

“Strong both visually and dramatically.”
Toni Jerrman / Kauppalehti

“A well-made, powerful adaptation.”
Niina Holm / Episodi

“Besides being visually powerful, Jokinen shows a mature talent in narrative. He is an exceptionally sensitive director of actors.”
Juhani Nurmi / Kaleva

“A tight quality movie. Antti Jokinen has faith in his visual talent and action but he also has the skill and patience to let his characters grow, to let his actors do what they do well.”
Ismo Lehtonen / Seiska

“Every little detail, every cut are spot on and flawless. You can’t praise the actors too much. The female stars shine.”
Eeva Rajala / The Voice

 “Now that PURGE is finished, we must say that Jokinen has done his job well… Liisi Tandefelt and Laura Birn are the old and young Aliide. Their performances are the heart and soul of the movie… Birn must be mentioned as an actress on the finest kind.”
Veli-Pekka Lehtonen / Helsingin Sanomat

Produced by Markus Selin from Finland’s leading production house Solar Films, PURGE spans over 50 years, telling the story of two women from two different eras, who are linked by separate tales of deceit, desperation and fear. PURGE stars some of the most respected Finnish actors and actresses such as Liisi Tandefelt, Laura Birn, Amanda Pilke and Peter Franzén.

You can read an interview with director Antti Jokinen right HERE.

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