Docpoint – Helsinki Documentary Film Festival

Programme (2020)

Among Wild Birds (2020)

Aho & Soldan’s first feature-length documentary film Among Wild Birds (Villilintujen parissa, 1927) will be screened in a special cineconcert held in collaboration with DocPoint, Sibafest and the National Audiovisual Institute (KAVI). In Finland’s first nature documentary ever, the filmmakers’ expedition leads them all the way to the Åland Islands and the Karelian Isthmus. On horses they make their way there while meeting up with artists and birdwatchers and suffering from the rough road conditions. The stars of the show still are the birds themselves: wild geese, Eurasian coots, common goldeneyes, white-tailed eagles, black guillemots, razorbills and Caspian terns…

The early cinematographic expression may not be there quite yet, but it offers a unique cultural and historical perspective to Finland back then – the streets of Helsinki packed with horse carts and the untouched nature of the Åland Islands and the Bol’shoye Rakovoye Lake in Karelia. The budding conventions of modern day documentaries can already be sensed.

After its premiere on the 27th of November 1927, the Helsingin Sanomat newspaper had this to say about the film: “What is especially striking about the cinematography, is the great effort that has been put into ensure the film’s quality. (…) Personally I take great pleasure in watching this film compared to the films of monkeys and tigers that the Southern parts of the world have to offer.”

Kati Juurus
Translation: Aki Pitkäkoski

The film is accompanied by folk music students Verna Kylmänen, Emma Myllynen, Onni Rajaniemi, Aurora Visa and music technology student Elisa Härmä from Uniarts Helsinki’s Sibelius Academy. The director of the accompaniment is Anna-Kaisa Liedes.

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Film Title : Among Wild Birds
Language : Finnish
Director : Heikki Aho, Björn Soldan
Year : 1927
Length : 75
Age limit : S
Format : 35 mm
Cinematographer : Heikki Aho, Björn Soldan
Editing : Heikki Aho
Production Company : Aho, Soldan & Co.
Title in Original Language : Villilintujen parissa

Screenings :
Thu 30.1. at 17.00, Kino Regina