It’s 1945, and the north of Europe is in chaos as Finland turns against its former ally Germany and the Russians sweep through the country. Two Finnish soldiers, fleeing from the Germans, are separated by an explosion; Seppo (Erik Kiviniemi) thinks his buddy is dead. He winds up exhausted on the outskirts of a small Lapp community called Sagojokk, where just about everything is run by a
tough, no-nonsense bully, Neia (Bjorn Sundquist). The locals mistake Seppo for a government minister, sent from Helsinki to supervise postwar reconstruction and land reform — and he doesn’t disabuse them, happy to be treated with respect and to receive the attentions of pretty Marit (Sara Margrethe Oskal), Neia’s sister.
Neia and his cronies become increasingly disturbed as the “minister” sets about distributing land to the peasants, pocketing a “registration fee” for himself, and starting construction of a road. Neia decides to have the stranger
killed, but his efforts fail, and, eventually, he turns quisling and brings German soldiers into the village to sort things out. Matters are complicated further by the arrival of Seppo’s missing buddy, who wants to be a part of the
Besides its colorful characters, comedy and music, pic includes a few suspenseful sequences — in particular, one in which Seppo and Marit, in a small boat, are pursued by a pair of Neia’s henchmen down a fast-flowing river toward a waterfall.
The lanky Kiviniemi is an engaging hero, Oskal a fresh-faced heroine and Sundquist a ripe villain. Visually, the film is extremely handsome.