The Ignorant Blind Man Although it shouldn’t be revolutionary, casting an actual blind actor to play the character’s deaf protagonist feels revolutionary in the context of Titanic. The film is a dark thriller that moves quickly and immerses us in the perspective of Jaakko, played by Petri Poikolainen, who has never met Sirpa in person but speaks to her on the phone every day. When Jaakko learns about Sirpa’s failing health, he decides to travel to another city to see her. Along the route, he meets five strangers whose assistance he must rely on if he wants to make it to her – alone.
We never see or hear anything outside of Jaakko’s head in this suspenseful thriller. Because of this, Poikolainen’s portrayal as the title character, Jaakko, is one of the film’s most impressive achievements, as is the fact that the camera stays close to him the entire time.
The small details that Jaakko adds to his character only serve to enhance the story. His infatuation with John Carpenter films is a sticking point, and he constantly compares everyone he comes into contact with to characters in a movie. As a result of these decisions, Jaakko is given a sense of agency that pulls the plot along like an intense thriller – without once slowing down.
Blind Man Who Didn’t Witness Titanic may have fallen into the cliched inspirational trap that most Hollywood films tend to popularise but instead does not shy away from condemning abled people who have locked out disabled persons in the society of doing so much better than they currently do. Compared to current Oscar winners like Sound of Metal, Sami Kiiski, Heikki Kossi and Roope Mantere’s sound design contributions in this film definitely offer this film the extra helping of authenticity that it needs to succeed.
This is a standout performance for me at the Glasgow Film Festival and one that makes the audience feel every emotion that the central character goes through from the very first frame to the very last – a resounding accomplishment. But the movie depends on Petri Poikolaninen’s performance and he is excellent here.
‘The Blind Man Who Did Not Want to See Titanic’ Wins Top Awards at El Gouna Film Festival https://t.co/v3Hq396VDP
— Variety (@Variety) October 22, 2021
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