Disco and Atomic War

Dir. Jaak Kilmi, Ruut (Eetriüksus Ltd), Helsinki Filmi Oy, 2009 | 85′, Estonia, Finland

The film project was presented at the Baltic Sea Docs 2007.

The story of a strange information war, wherein a totalitarian regime goes to war with pop culture stars… and loses. Western pop culture influences played an incomparably large role in shaping the worldviews of Soviet children – also in ways that could seem rather strange by today’s standards. In director Jaak Kilmi’s birthplace, Estonia, as recently as the 1980s Finnish television was like a window to a dream world, and the authorities were unable to nail this window shut. Even though Finnish TV channels were forbidden, many households still found a way to get to the forbidden fruit. Disco and Atomic War offers its version of recent history – a tragic-comedy of human life with elements of spy games.

In order to obtain material for the script, the filmmakers invited their peers to share memories of Finnish television and childhood in the 70s and 80s. From the stories in the letters that were sent in they created four fictional film characters, while the fifth is director Jaak Kilmi himself.

In Estonian, English, Finnish and Russian with Latvian or English subtitles.