• Saara Hakkarainen
  • Finland
  • 2020
  • 15 min
  • World Premiere
  • IDFA Competition for Student Documentary

In a hybrid combination of color and black-and-white footage, interviews, and staged scenes, Saara Hakkarainen tells the difficult story of Aleksi, who as a student discovered that he had pedophilic feelings. He has struggled for ten years with his sexual orientation and the emotions it has engendered. He felt deep self-hatred, that his life was worthless, and he became desperate when he realized that his orientation meant he had no prospect of a normal life.

Aleksi himself doesn’t want to be identifiable in any way, so an actor takes his place in the first scene. The actor presents as a seemingly perfectly normal boy. He pets his dog. He visits his mother. Everyday scenes such as these are interspersed with short dream sequences. In voice-over, the narrator breaks his long silence. He talks about his loneliness and offers glimpses into a life with sexual desires which are hugely taboo. He poses a rhetorical question: “How would you feel if you were never able to embrace your own sexuality?”


  • 15 min
  • color / black and white
  • DCP
  • Spoken languages: Finnish
  • Subtitles in: English
Saara Hakkarainen
Aino Niemi / ELO Helsinki Film School, Pauliina Maus / ELO Helsinki Film School
Arttu Liimatta
Lyydia Mäkipää
Ossi Oikari

IDFA history

World Premiere
IDFA Competition for Student Documentary

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