Peter von Bagh – Helsinki, ikuisesti AKA Helsinki, Forever (2008)


This is a documentary / symphony of a city of Helsinki by the former director of the Finnish Film Archive Peter von Bach. None of the footage is original. A lot of it is found footage, but mostly it is from earlier films and documentaries. All the music is somehow related to Helsinki as well. There is narration over a lot of the footage that explains, tells stories and reads poems. Enjoy.

From the blog of Jonathan Rosenbaum:


An unexpected gift arrives in the mail: a subtitled preview of Peter von Bagh’s fabulous and rather Markeresque documentary (2008)—a lovely city symphony which is also a history of Helsinki (and incidentally, Finland, Finnish cinema, and Finnish pop music) recounted with film clips and paintings by three voices (two male, one of them von Bagh’s, and one female—each one reciting what seems to be a slightly different style of poetic and essayistic discourse). There are no chapter divisions on this DVD, and the continuity is more often geographical than chronological, although there’s also a lot of leaping about spatially as well as temporally. At separate stages we’re introduced to the best-ever Finnish camera movement and the best Finnish musical, are invited to browse diverse neighborhoods and eras (and to ponder contrasts in populations and divorce rates), and are finally forced to admit that a surprising amount of very striking film footage has emerged from this country and city. Continue reading