SISU

What if Quentin Tarantino was a Finnish art-house director who made a brutal action movie? Sisu.
79/100113399
Starring
Jorma Tommila, Aksel Hennie Jack Doolan
Director
Jamari Helander
Rating
R
Genre
Action, War
Release date
April 28, 2023
Overall Score
Rating Overview
Plot/Story
55%
Visuals/Cinematography
85%
Performance
70%
Direction
85%
Non-Wokeness
100%
Rating Summary
Visually striking and darkly satisfying, Sisu is a brutally efficient film without an ounce of fat on it. It's a testament to minimalistic filmmaking and holds a mirror to the effects-heavy meaningless CGI focus group-approved nonsense that has become the bulk of American cinema. This movie forgoes all of the tropes that have had us drooling into a paper cup for the last 14 years. There's no quippy dialogue and farcical jokes interrupting important emotional moments. There's no schmalzy and artificial relationship drama. Sisu is uber-focused, knows exactly what it is, and delivers.

Meaning the Finnish equivalent of guts or grit, Sisu isn’t revolutionary, but it serves as a nail-biting palette cleanser to get the taste of meaningless third-act battles with giant disposable CGI armies out of your mouth and remind you what an action flick can be.

Sisu

If Schadenfreude was a movie, it would be Sisu. Set in Finland circa 1944, as WWII comes to a close, Sisu follows a grizzled and solitary gold prospector and legendary ex-soldier who perseveres on shear unrelenting determination, as he brutally works his way through a group of Nazi raiders who have robbed him of his gold.

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The story is virtually non-existent, with almost no dialogue (in fact, the lead only has one line in the entire film). Instead, Sisu takes full advantage of crisp and violent visuals and lead performer Jorma Tommila’s craggy weather-beaten face to carry what narrative there is to the end.

sisu jorma tommila

One might think that, because it’s a film about stealing a bag of gold it may be challenging for the audience to connect with the film on any level beyond the most primitive of bloodlust, however, there’s just enough of a B-plot to give it that half of a dimension more it needs to make the audience cheer.

Furthermore, the two main villains manage to be both evil and sadistic enough to root for their deaths and realistic enough to not laugh at. This gives us two very satisfying endings and one of the best villain deaths in recent cinema.

For a film that feels a lot like a really cool hour-and-a-half video game cut screen, Sisu is Worth it, if not perfect. A case could easily be made that the lead character should have died in every confrontation and that there was time to include a flashback or two in lieu of a paragraph of exposition, but Sisu is most definitely a case of style winning over substance.

It won’t win any awards for…anything, but Sisu is a very entertaining way to spend 90 minutes.

WOKE ELEMENTS

Hahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahahaha. No.

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James Carrick

James Carrick is a passionate film enthusiast with a degree in theater and philosophy. James approaches dramatic criticism from a philosophic foundation grounded in aesthetics and ethics, offering insight and analysis that reveals layers of cinematic narrative with a touch of irreverence and a dash of snark.

11 comments

  • Dredd Martyr

    May 23, 2023 at 9:10 pm

    Take note, Hollywoke.
    This is how you make an action film. At least this is how you used to make them.

    14
    4

    Reply

    • DeathToFascists

      July 28, 2023 at 6:26 pm

      Your mother is ashamed of you. She secretly wishes she either swallowed or aborted you.

      2
      16

      Reply

  • Josh

    June 1, 2023 at 1:26 pm

    LOVED this movie. My favorite of the year so far.

    7
    3

    Reply

  • ChoketheWoke

    July 1, 2023 at 10:52 pm

    A wonderful grindhouse film by men for men. This is real entertainment, and not the Woke, effeminate garbage that makes up the majority of what’s put on screens today.

    8
    4

    Reply

  • NoMore Quislings

    July 2, 2023 at 7:24 pm

    Sorry to burst your bubble, but there is nothing more woke than Nazis getting whacked for an hour and a half, including women getting their own revenge. Excellent movie though.

    13
    7

    Reply

    • DeathToFascists

      July 28, 2023 at 6:28 pm

      Precisely this. Killing nazi trash is very woke and borderline p0rnographic in terms of enjoyment. We need movies about killing the nazi garbage alive here today in America.

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      Reply

      • Ham Syde

        February 25, 2024 at 10:01 am

        You can easily recognize the nazis as they parrot 4chan language with no hesitation.The channers have succesfuly put an attractive, wacky face on nazism and infiltrated our language and culture

        Reply

  • Sj

    July 7, 2023 at 5:20 pm

    Watched this at cinema 2 weeks ago.
    Gory, alpha, about 5% woke MAX! funny at times. The nazis ways of treating people reminds me of how todays woke governments treat average folk just trynna live their lives

    5
    2

    Reply

  • northern_dirt

    July 9, 2023 at 1:04 pm

    Should have been killing Soviet soldiers too. Much greater threat to the Finns during WW2

    8
    2

    Reply

  • kessler

    July 19, 2023 at 5:26 pm

    Looks like fun, but the obsession with nazis getting whacked is getting a bit boring. Not because I like nazis but because the left now conflates nazism with conservatism. They see a nazi getting killed, they see a conservative getting killed – to them we are one and the same.

    7
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    Reply

    • DeathToFascists

      July 28, 2023 at 6:23 pm

      Because you are all one and the same. This movie should inspire all of us to kill our local nazi inbreds for the greater good of humanity.

      3
      11

      Reply

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