Estonian drama film “Truth and Justice”, directed by Tanel Toom and based on the book series by Anton Hansen Tammsaare, will premiere at the Gate Picturehouse cinema in London’s Notting Hill on 25 September.
The movie’s premiere will take place at 12 pm at the Gate Picturehouse and before the screening, there will be an introductory conversation by Allan Cameron, the UK publisher of “Truth and Justice” (Vagabond Voices), and Ian Thomson, a writer and journalist.
A quintessential work
The film, released domestically in February 2019, is based in part on the five-volume book series by Anton Hansen Tammsaare (1878-1940). His pentalogy, “Truth and Justice” (“Tõde ja õigus” in Estonian), written from 1926 to 1933, is considered one of the quintessential works of Estonian literature and “the Estonian novel”.
Adapted from the book’s first volume, the movie presents life in an Estonian village, as farmers battle against the nature during the last quarter of the 19th century. The two main characters, both unique and powerful men, represent the essential conflicts of human nature: not only good vs evil, but also hope vs conservatism and conquest vs pettiness.
Just like the first volume of the book, the film deals with universal issues that are as relevant today. Although set in rural Estonia at the threshold of modernity, it somewhat still characterises modern Estonians – a story of simple people who work endlessly, striving to build a world were truth and justice prevail.
Desperately seeking truth and justice
The film starts with a showing of a young and energetic man, Andres, together with his wife, Krõõt, arriving to their new farm, bought on a loan to start their new life. The household needs a lot of work and consistency – a battle with nature, fate and Andres’s spiteful neighbour, Pearu, begins.
When life deals Andres more sufferings than long-awaited successes, he searches desperately for truth and justice – from court, tavern and the Bible, sacrificing his family, friends and eventually himself in the process. The dream of a prosperous and a nurturing farm – called Robber’s Rise – descends deeper and deeper under the shadow of reality.
The movie was directed by Tanel Toom and produced by Allfilm – in recent years, the most successful film production company in Estonia.