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Entertainment > Movies > "Tom of Finland"--a Movie Review

"Tom of Finland"--a Movie Review

Touko Laaksonen—more famously and widely known as Tom of Finland—was an important influence on Gay art from the 1950s on. He was the creator of changing the imagine of the homosexual from an effeminate moving and acting to a highly masculine Gay man emphasized in the outfits of police, uniforms of bikers, soldiers, leatherman, leaders, strong muscular men with exaggerated physical endowments.

While based on his life, “Tom of Finland”, how much is true and how much has been added to Laaksonen’s life, is hard to know unless you know him. The first hour is a good depiction of how Gay men ‘hid’ whether serving his country in WW2 or living with his sister and being in the closet. It is in the second hour of the film that comes alive when he goes to California and becomes known as the artist he was and in the 1970s and 1980s influenced the world.

With topics as hot as whether Tom of Finland’s work was porno or art, whether he contributed to the spread of AIDS or was an outlet for men with AIDS, the 3 couples that the film follows, what brought them together, how differently each couple made a life, why so many Gay men were drawn to his work plus many other issues that are skipped over including so many of the political issues that were prevalent among gay people in the latter half of the twentieth century.

The first half of the film that takes place mainly in Finland’s parks, bars and alleyways is dark while the second half which to California is mainly in bright colors.

The screenplay by Aleksi Bardy introduces a lot of interesting subjects but skirts too many of them. The director Dome Karukoski follows many of the events of Laaksonen’s life and while he highlights most of them he also turns the camera away when it should have stayed on some scenes longer.

“Tom of Finland” should be seen by all Gay men to learn some of their history, will probably be seen by older Gay men who know who he was and was probably a part of their life It should also be seen by non-Gays to learn what their family members and friends who were/are Gay though they might not have even known about them and find out how they survived all those years.

“Tom of Finland” is an educational film for both Gay and non-Gay people it really isn’t a film that emotionally involves the audience though it should and could hasve.

Movie trailer

posted on Nov 3, 2017 4:45 PM ()

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