Olavi Virta (2018) - full transcript

The life of Finnish singer-actor Olavi Virta.

Oh, night, you let me forget once

Under your wing I was safe

You carried me off to a dreamland

And I dreamt of a fairytale

I saw once again your eyes so dear

and those smiling cherry lips

I believed that happiness was near

I believed in my fantasies

Oh, night, I miss you so dearly

and the fairytale land so rare

I miss the time I was happy

My memories carry me there

I see once again your eyes so bright

And those cherry lips smile again

A light fills my sorrowful night

My worries are gone there and then

My worries are gone there and then

Saturday makes you sing.
- It sure does.

Will you go to the dance tonight?
Dallapé is playing.

I most certainly will!

Look here.
- I see.

All right.
Now you're ready for the masquerade.

Do we have a deal?
- We have a deal.

Ladies and gentlemen, today you have
a chance to sing with the orchestra.

Only the first ones
will get on stage.

This is a unique opportunity.
Don't be afraid.

Do it. This is your chance.
Do we have a deal?

Never! I'd feel like a clown.

Exactly! Let's go.

Here comes your first singer.
Olavi Virta!

"Whispering" in C major.

Ladies and gentlemen,
the next performer is Olavi Virta.

You have a natural singing voice.

Do you play an instrument?
- Violin and guitar.

And the piano.

We have a Dallapé academy
and student orchestra.

You could practise and get your foot
in the door, if you're interested?

I most certainly am.
- All right. Join the party, then.

Shall I see you there?
- You shall.

All right.

All right!

I'd like to be
a real musician some day.

Give it a shot. As a singer,
if not as an instrumentalist.

Do we have a deal?
- It's not that easy.

No, if you don't even try.

Women queue up to the room
when you're on stage.

Not quite.

When you're a star
and can choose the best lasses,

remember to give the rest
to your buddy.

Do we have a deal?
- But I'd need a proper education...

Will you make excuses
for the rest of your life?

No, but...
- You can't live your life

saying "but" all the time.
- True, but...

Cut it out!

Will you hit the town with me?

I would, but...

I promised mother
to have dinner with her.

You promised mother
to have dinner.

How is it going at the factory?

It's going. Just fine.

It was a godsend that
you got the job at Strémberg.

Yes, it was.

What's the matter now?

Has father been knocking
on the door again?


- What's that?

It's a dance advertisement.

People probably drink
and do all sorts of things.

People dance.

Do you drink?
- No.

I don't want you
to end up like your father.

I won't.

Promise not to quit your job.
Singing is so uncertain.

Many people make a living out of it.

Will you promise me?


The years have passed by

There's no more euphoria

My youth is already gone

But the beautiful fragrance

of the bird cherry tree

is something I'll never

ever forget

But the beautiful fragrance

of the bird cherry tree

is something I'll never

ever forget


- Is the singer boy busy?

Sorry, may I interrupt?
I am Niilo Saarikko.

Olavi Virta.

I'd like to talk to you in private.

Well, good night then.

You sang beautifully.
- Oh, thank you.

And good night.
- Bye.


I own all the rights
for Columbia Records in Finland.

I've hired recording equipment
and audio engineers from Germany.


Bruno Laakko said you're
the best singer in the Helsinki area.

He suggested you become
the vocalist for Dallapé.

For the recordings.
- Me?

What do you think?
- Well.

Of course. I mean... definitely.

Thanks, I'll pass.
It hasn't become a habit.

Come on, let's celebrate.

Okay, then. Let's celebrate.

We'll start recording in August.
You need to practise.

It's starting to sound all right.

There's just a tiny problem
with the recording.

What problem?
- Jéppilé has a contract with PSO

that Dallapé
can only record for them.

The orchestra cannot record
for any other labels.

But it cannot restrict us
as independent musicians.

Let's come up with a new name.
- You're right.

It's not Dallapé
if the name is different.

Just think of another name.

We're playing the whole autumn
at the restaurant Bat.

Does that help?

The Bats!

There it is.

Announce the song.

Bruno Laakko
and his orchestra The Bats

play the foxtrot "Rowan Tree".
Singer: Olavi Virta.

One, two, three, four!

I wanted to talk to you. Do you have
a permanent position at Strémberg?

Is anything permanent?
But I've had work so far.

It's just that I need a salesperson
in my record shop,

and you know a thing or two
about foreign music, too.

So what do you say?
- Me working in a record shop?

Or... will you miss the factory?

No, I surely won't.
- So is it a deal?

It most certainly is. Thanks.

You've no idea how pleased I am.

And it's good publicity that you'll
sing a song in a film, no less.

Indeed. It seems the world
is getting on the right track.


Lights, camera, action.

Oh, my sweet darling

There's only one thing I desire

Oh, please forgive me

My dear sweetheart


I know I treated you badly

But you can bring joy back into
this guilty heart

No consolation

It's something I can't find

No alleviation

can ever ease my mind

But my sweet darling

There's only one thing I desire

Oh, please forgive me

It's all I ask from you


Bloody hell.

President Kallio has declared
a state of war.

At 9 o'clock, Vyborg sounded
an air raid warning,

and enemy bombers
started bombing the city.

A heavy artillery fire started
this morning at the Karelian Isthmus,

and it has reached all the way
to Kivennapa and Raivola.

Soviet units have crossed
the border and attacked areas

in Raate and to the north
of Lake Lagoda.

Our troops
keep resisting bravely...


Ola, wait.

I see you got a bit hurt.

No, I'm just resting here
for a while.

No need to rush, eh?

Take it easy. Easy now.


If I get too tired, you continue.


Sing, Ola.

Never stop singing.

You're a singer.


Do we have a deal?

Good evening. May I sit down?

A Finnish soldier needs
to rest his feet.



Irene... Do you have another name?

Irene Dorothy Violetta.

Wow, that's...

Sounds very American.
- Sure does.

I'd love to ask you to dance, but...

I wonder if the dancing ban
will ever end.

Everything ends, eventually.

Dancing is banned, eating isn't.

Am I being too forward

if I would like to offer
Irene Dorothy Violetta a dinner?

How long is your leave?

Endlessly long.

My train leaves tomorrow morning.

Taking me somewhere...

Then I worked in the army radio
as an announcer and a technician.

And after that,
I entertained the troops.

And now that the Russians
started barging again

and the trench war ended, I was
commanded to fight at the front.

We don't have enough men anymore.

I wish the war would end already.

It has lasted forever.


How old are you?

- Seventeen?

You have your whole life
ahead of you.

Thank you.

I'm married.

I see.


And I have a six-month-old daughter.


I was sixteen when I got pregnant.

And I needed
the President's permission to marry

because I was underage.

The President gave a permission?
- He did.

Sulo and I tried to live together,
but we knew it wouldn't work out.

You got a divorce?
- No.

We're separated.
But we're still married.

So he wasn't Prince Charming.
- No.

God, how stupid. And childish.

But Ilse is the loveliest child
in the world.

So that's my story.

Whew, that's a relief.

A relief?

I thought it might have been
something serious.

Something that would prevent us
from spending our lives together.

What time is it?

I have to hurry!

Promise not to die a hero.

I promise.

Remember to write me!

Here you go, Irene Dorothy Violetta.

What are these?
- Flowers!

Fresh from the park flower bed.

The train had already gone.
- But you can't stay here.

If I'm going to be late,
I might as well be more late.

I can't believe it's finally over.

I'm on my way to Lappeenranta
to hand over my equipment.

Then I should be able to come home.

We'll get you an official divorce
even though it might be hard.

I'll take care of the legal matters,
and then you and I will get married.

I will adopt little Ilse and
take care of her like she's my own.

Don't worry.
My head is full of plans.

We'll live with my mother at first.
The flat is small,

but we'll be all right.

There would've been
plenty of unmarried women.

Irene is so very young.

Why are you in such a rush
to tie the knot?

You could have taken your time...
- Mother!

And you'll raise another man's child!

Couldn't you...
- How long will you keep nagging?

How can we live in this small flat?
- It's only temporary.

Flats are just so hard
to come by right now.

Look, the little miss woke up.

I've planned our future so that

one day, this girl
will be dressed like a princess.

And the other two women of my life,
I'll get them fancy frocks as well.

And we'll get mother Ida
a nice dress and dance shoes

so she'll stop moping
at home all the time.

- Hi.

It finally happened!
The dancing ban has been lifted.

Goddamn, finally!
Lads, we're going on a tour!

Now people want to
sing and dance, be merry.


Guitar and violin strings
are impossible to get.

I'm going to manufacture
and sell those, too. - Olavi.

Everything is easier now that
Olavi Virta Ltd. is registered.

But when will we register
Olavi and Irene Ltd.?

As soon as the divorce is final.

Don't worry. I promise.

How come it's taking so long?
- Well...

It's just bureaucracy.

And we're not in a hurry.

We're not, but this one here
doesn't understand bureaucracy.

Are you...
- Yes.

Well, that's...

When is it...
- In November.

I was hoping we'd be married.
- It doesn't matter.

What matters is that
there'll be more Virtas in the world!

- Hi there.

Take a taxi
and go to the Kallio church.

I booked a priest for one o'clock.
He'll marry us.

Mother will be there shortly
to look after Ilse and Pauli.

Well, what's more romantic
than a Monday.

I've got one more meeting
before that.

See you at the church at one.

See you.

I heard you don't have a contract
with any record label.

That's correct.

The Sointu label offers you
a generous contract.

I want you to travel to Stockholm.
- Stockholm?

Studios are better and cheaper.

Find six good songs,
book a studio and musicians,

record the songs, and bring
the finished matrices back here.

Can you do it?

Certainly. When am I supposed to...

Now. Immediately.

I see.

Well... I...

ls there a problem?

No, there isn't.

There you go, flowers.

Will you wait here and take Miss...
I mean Mrs. Virta

back to Pääskylänkatu street.
- All right.


In the sky,
the evening star glistens

I send my love
to my dear family

I tell the star
just how much I miss them

and that my heart aches
at the lonely sea

How was Stockholm?


Something for the wife.
Straight from Stockholm.

Beautiful! Why did you get
something so expensive?

Because we recorded a song like this:

I love you

I'm almost going crazy

Now listen, my sweet lady,

and hear my heart beat

Ossi Elstelä asked me to stop by.

Ola, hello!
- Hello.

I'm glad you came.
- What's up?

The bastards banned
the Happy Theatre.

Closed it, just like that!
- Who?

Home Secretary Leino
gave the order,

but everyone knows that it's
the bloody Control Commission.

We can't even let loose at a revue.
- No!

Or utter a few truths.
We have to keep our mouths shut.

But Palle and I
decided to keep going.

Yeah. We'll just change the name.
It's now The Red Mill.

Perhaps the Kremlin
will prefer "red" over "happy".

So, will you join the gang?
- Well...

I have plenty of gigs coming...
- Let's do a proper cabaret!

I've got all sorts of plans.

You would co-star with
a bunch of young, long-legged ladies.

Damn it! When shall we start?

L don't wanna brag, but I know
an awesome lad called Kalle Aaltonen

All your fears and troubles,
they quickly melt away

as soon as you see Kalle Aaltonen

I don't wanna brag, but I know
an awesome lad called Kalle Aaltonen

All your fears and troubles,
they quickly melt away

as soon as you see Kalle Aaltonen

I don't wanna brag, but I know
an awesome lad called Kalle Aaltonen

All your fears and troubles,
they quickly melt away

as soon as you see Kalle Aaltonen

Thanks! Well done, Ola.

An hour's break. Not even the devil
shoots in this weather.

The devil doesn't,
but Elstelä does!

Start the camera.
We don't have the money to wait.


The boy will never forget, ho hey

the girl that he once met, ho hey

Even though destiny took her

away, away, away!

The Princess Armada, ho hey

She's our ship and our home, ho hey

She's the best steamboat there is

She is, she is, she is!

The flower of the waves, ho hey

The jewel of the shores, ho hey

The waves always cherish her

They do, they do, they do!

The Skipper Quartet seems
to have struck a chord with people.

What if we built a whole film
around the Skippers?

Does that mean you agree?

Is it a deal?

I hear you loud and clear.

Enjoy your evening.

Sorrow, sorrow

Now my poor heart is full of sorrow

Your words, they brought me joy
for a while

But life will always find a way to
wipe your smile

Fleeting, fleeting

The joy is fleeting,
and I'm weeping

Now I treat everyone suspiciously

Because you lied to me

Happy New Year.
- Happy New Year.

Happy New Year.
- Happy New Year!

Thank you! The afternoon show
was good, but this was even better.

A magnificent show!

Thanks, everyone.
See you on Wednesday.

Happy New Year!
- Where are you going?

- Where's our pay?

You'll get it on Wednesday.

What do you mean?
- Everyone gets paid on Wednesday.

What the hell? The till is full,
and the show is sold out every time.

It's better this way. Trust me.

It's New Year's Eve.
- Exactly!

If I pay you, you'll drink it all.

On Wednesday you'll be hung-over,
asking for an advance.

No, we won't!
- Hey, you'll thank me later

when you haven't drunk
every penny on New Year's.

If you don't pay, I'll quit.

No you won't.
- Give me my money, now!

On Wednesday.

Fine, goddammit.
You can pay me on Wednesday,

but it'll be my last pay.

I'm leaving now for good.

Goodbye and a happy new year.

Big orchestras are no longer in.

No-one books groups
as big as Dallapé anymore.

You could start your own group.

That's what
you've been dreaming about.

That's exactly what I'll do.

Four or five lads will do just fine.

The burning sun
and the golden moon

Someone might find them
so beautiful

But what warms my heart
and what makes me twirl

is this adorable curly-haired girl

Your hair is on flames,
and so is your heart too

You are my red-headed girl

I remember a time
when I gently caressed you

Now those moments are forever gone

You asked me to share
my happiness with you

You were my red-headed girl

But I chose to refuse,
and now I feel so blue

I can't find happiness anymore

Who is the one
who now strokes your curls?

Who has the bliss
you once gave to me?

Perhaps he buys you
jewels and pearls

Perhaps he's better
than I'd have been

But with this song,
my heart always careens

to see my red-headed girl

Even though you are gone
and nowhere to be seen

Let me come now to you
in my dreams



Who's car is that?

Are you still sleeping?

How come you're still in bed?

I was so sleepy.

Well, was he any good?


Olavi Virta!

Olavi Virta?

Yes, him. Was he any good?

Yes. He was good.

So he knew what he was doing.

He did!

You've thrown your clothes
all over the floor.

Time to get to work.
This is what you get

when you dance all night long.

My darling

If you never ever will be mine

My soul will be consumed by

the black and dreary night

I think about you every morning

I dream about you at night

And every single evening,

I yearn to be by your side

I love you

I'm almost going crazy

Now listen, my sweet lady,

and hear my heart beat

As soon as a lad gets some dough

He pours it down his throat

I see we have a visitor.
Give a hand to Olavi Virta.

Olavi and his orchestra,
when they come to town

They're so charming that they'll
have you smitten and spellbound

Fathers, mothers, doctors,
they all appeal to you

Quickly take your daughters,
lock them up into their rooms

All right. I can tell you
that it wasn't all that surprising

When I heard the way
Olavi Virta is behaving

In the pharmacy,
I learned Latin from miss Blanche

She told me syphilis
is not a modern dance

Even the memories divine

They itch for a long, long time

Thank you.

You're on the road again.
What's your route this time?

We go up in the east,
turn around in Kemijärvi,

and come down the west coast.

The tour takes the whole summer.

I know. We'll get to see
the reindeer and the north again.

The bloody reindeer.

During the trench war,
it was my turn to empty the privy.

In the evening, I saw a big
herd of reindeer roaming nearby.

In the morning,
I started emptying the privy,

but it was completely empty. Well.

I saw the beasts
licking their lips with gusto,

and I thought I'd never eat
reindeer again. And I haven't.

Sauteed reindeer, sir.

All right)'-

Goddamn, Repe.
You don't eat reindeer!

Who told you that?

Good evening, artists.
May I disturb you for a second?

You may, but it costs.
Five litres of cut brandy.

I was about to suggest that.

- It's my company's annual party.

I thought I'd ask if the gentlemen
could perform there for a while.

I'll pay of course.
- Well, it's 20,000 Finnish marks.

That's fine.
- Per person.

All right.
- Per song.

Of course. And as much
food and drink as you want.

Goddamn. The Finnish bourgeoisie
is a civilised bunch.

L don't wanna brag, but I know
an awesome lad called Kalle Aaltonen

All your fears and troubles,
they quickly melt away

as soon as you see Kalle Aaltonen

I'm enquiring if my husband
Olavi Virta is staying in your hotel?

Mr. Virta. You have a phone call.

I see. I'm coming!

Thank you!

Get your bloody hands off me!

You're a married man!

Did you light the fire?

With one match.

Harriet doesn't want to fall asleep.

Should we have some wine?
It's such a nice day.

No, thanks.

And maybe
you shouldn't have any, either.


Luckily we were able
to rent this place.

Now the whole family
can get away from home.

I've got plans after
we've saved up a decent nest egg.

Then we'll get this flock
a flashy apartment.

Do you have to leave tomorrow?

I have to go.

I can't help it.

Children! Soon we'll go to the sauna.




Vera was a wanderer,
oh, so fair

She had dark skin
and pitch-black hair

Vera said to every man "No way!"

And Vera blew everyone's mind away

And the steamboat that we loved

was called Princess Armada

We floated timber all day long

on the waves of Lake Saimaa

We're the Skipper Quartet.

Next up is Olavi Virta
and his orchestra.

This road leads us

to happiness and blissfulness

But only if you're not afraid
to join me

Gone are the days when

I was sad and blue

Today, I finally

get to be with you

And so this road will

lead us into happiness and bliss

and take us to ecstasy

All right.
The same amount for everyone.

How do we know
how much you got?

It's like when you were the treasurer
on Käyhkö's filming trip.

Things didn't quite add up!


Kake, you checked the accounts.
Was there anything dubious?

Well... No.

Or did you even get more money
when I was in charge?

- Did you?

Well, I guess we did.

Yeah. We've worked our arses off
for a couple of years now,

and you keep talking bullshit!
- Shouting won't solve anything.

You heard there's nothing to solve.

There is. The boys and I have talked.

The boys and you.
You didn't consider talking to me?

We are doing that now.
- You should forget your own band

and focus on the Skippers.

Is that so?
- Yes.

Is it a wish or a suggestion?

It's a decision.
- You've got to choose.

And every lad agrees?
- Yeah, we kinda do.

It's not a tough choice.
- About the accounts...

Can't you stop, damn it?
- No.

And you don't trust Käyhkö?
- I do, but not you.

Will you shut up already?
- No.

Boys, this is the best dance
orchestra in Finland.

And nothing will stop us!
- That's right!



Goddamn, Ola.
You're one lucky son of a gun.

No-one will come here
before morning, damn it.

Stop moping, grown men.

Tonight we'll stay
in a nice hotel, I promise.

Hello. A hundred hot sausages.

And something to flush it down with.
- A proper buffet!

Dig in.

So you already put it on.

Those bloody boys
were fooling around.

I guess they did it
when I fell asleep in the car.

And they filled it for you, too.

What was it called,
the film you shot last summer?

"L Hate You, Darling."



Is it just the two of you?

Where's your mother?
- She went to see a judge.

I'm sure she'll be back soon.

A judge?

Dad, are we going to move?

Mum started packing
our clothes already.

You're not sleeping here. Go home.

I guess I don't have a home.

She hangs up every time I call.

Women sure are awful.

Mr. Singer has been away for a week
piss-arse drunk, pitying himself.

And the wife refuses to give him
a warm hug and welcome him home.

I wonder why.

Well, have a drink.

That's your last supper.
- You'll stop drinking and man up.

We have work to do.

You like your drink, too.
- But you have to do your job!

And keep your home base clean.

It's easy to lose track

when everyone pats you on the back
and shoves money into your pockets.

The booze is free,
and the women are easy.

With this face,
I haven't had that problem.

I've done some research.

The flat you went to see
is now available.

So take off your hat
and go see the bank manager.

Maybe Cupid will come back
when there's more space.

Hi. Come on in.

Come on now. Hi.

What is this place?
- Well...

This is our home.
- Are we going to live here?

We sure are.
- Our home.


What do you think?

Is it good enough?

This is huge.

The colour of her eyes...

Let's take a closer look.

...is a thing I can't describe

Her eyes just gleam

in my dreams

The contours of her face

are a thing I can't describe

They only exist

in my dreams

If I could be a painter,

the Mona Lisa would look paler

My painting marvellous,

like Michelangelo's

Like a dawn of a new day

I see the image in my brain

But that I can't do,

describe her eyes to you

Ah, I remember this!

Do you remember this?
- Now it comes.


Dad, don't!

I told you that this bit...

That was funny.

All the cupboards and furniture
were brought from America.

And this gas cooker.

All the way from America.
- Yes.

And this is a new innovation
even in America.

A fridge with a freezer compartment.

You can freeze anything in it.
And that, gentlemen, is the future.

You can't get these in Finland.
- Sure, sure.

Does the artist himself use
these fancy appliances?

Does Mr. Virta cook?

Yes, Olavi cooks when
he's at home and has the time.

Sure, when he has the time...

ls your husband a good cook?
- Yes, he is.

Very experimental.

What's your favourite dish, sir?
- It must be meatballs.

Nothing beats good meatballs.

Yeah, that's right.

Do you like
your father's cooking, children?

Yes, we do.
- Sure, sure.

Who's the best cook, mum or dad?
- Well...

- Sure, sure.

And here we have an aquarium.
It's beautifully lit

and mounted on the wall.

Yes. I got the idea
on one of my trips abroad.

On a trip. Sure, sure.

How does it feel, madam,

when so many Finnish women
admire your husband and envy you

and want to take your place
by his side?

Yes, it's a part of Olavi's work.

It's amazing that people like him
and his songs so much.

Sure, sure.

Aren't you jealous of his admirers?

And here's the sauna.
- Sauna!

In an apartment!
- Yes.

An electric heater,
and a head full of ideas.

When I see the sky, oh so blue

I long to stroll on its blue avenue

I yearn to soar high like a bird

But now I'm chained to the earth

When I see the sky, oh so blue

I long to stroll on its blue avenue

They'll be there in a week.


Let's drink to that.

"An American gas cooker is
the centre of Olavi Virta's kitchen."

"One can use a timer to turn the
cooker on or off at a desired time."

Damn! Someone should invent
a controlling apparatus for women.

For women?
- Yes. One could use a timer

to turn them on and off.

I thought you composed this.
- I did.

Stone is my pseudonym. Or people
will think I write all the songs.

Of course.

I saw Rautavaara at a café today.
- You shouldn't go to cafés.

Are you two still not talking?

It is what it is.

When I suggested you as the romantic
hero for the new Puupää film,

I didn't know you'd act
with Ruth Johansson.

I should've warned the poor girl.

Remember the old adage:
"Don't shit where you eat."

It'll only cause you trouble.

Maybe, maybe not.
You're just jealous.

Now listen to me, bro,
when I tell you how it goes

It strains a man's brains
if too many games

at the same time he plays
and has a new dame every day

That's uncalled for.
- Right.

No need to fuss,
the miss's crotch

is something I merely dismiss.
Your eyes are the only thing I miss

Just because of your blue eyes

All right, let's record a song.

When I look deep into your eyes

I can understand

Why happiness is so alluring

like a wonderland

Your eyes contain
the warmth of the sun

Your eyes contain
the glimmer of the moon

Just because of your blue eyes

I want to sing this song divine

Just because of your blue eyes

I reach the stars high in the sky

When I see your eyes,
I see your heart

If one has a trusted friend

The sky becomes so bright

The sky becomes so bright

Just because of your blue eyes

I can clear the cloudy sky

Just because of your blue eyes

I can move the mountainside

I'd throw away everything I own

When you only look at me

With your eyes so blue

With your eyes so blue

There you go, miss.
- Thank you.

The receipt. Bye.


Will you stay the rest of the day?
I must go to a meeting.

And after that, I have a gig.
Could you open up in the morning?

All right.

I'll ask your mother
to come again tomorrow.

Even though it would be
your job to ask her.

She wasn't exactly smiling today
when she came.

What's the important meeting about?

Record label business.

Bye then.

That's what it takes.
- Indeed.

Ola, goddamn!
We were wondering where you were.

I brought you presents.

Cuba libre!


The lads went to the wealthy America.
- That's right.

We sold quite a pile of records
to Finnish Americans.

One night, we were coming back
from a tavern,

and I saw this stunning Ford Fairlane
in the car dealership window.

- The dealer's jaw dropped

when Saarikko piled the notes
on his hand.

He asked "Are you serious?"

And I said
"No Sirius, from Finland!"

I've never found such a cheap car
in Finland, and the freight was free!

Ford Fairlane.

A drink to that.

All right, I've got to go.
- In the middle of the evening?

I have a gig in Kotka,
and I have to hurry.

A gig in "Eagle town",
an arm around a crow

Or a bird of some sorts

A bird of some sorts

Be careful. The police
are stalking on the street again.

I always am. Bye!
- Bye.

Good evening, officers.

Bye then.

Stop behind the corner.

Yes, this is fine.

Thank you.

The others, they are all dancing

You hear, Eva,
this lovely tune plays just for us

Eva, so captivating

are happy moments that our
love and music create just for us

So long you stayed,
so long alone

I looked at heaven
and I thought about you, dear

You came, and in my arms

I took you, Eva, and I danced
with you away among the stars

Your eyes so bright and open
tell me not to worry

We'll never walk
this road alone again

Howdy. A few sausages,
so you won't fall asleep.


It's all so enchanting,
everything is magic

All else fades,
and only one thing stays

It is our love, of course,
and the shimmer of the moon

Nothing else is true,
it's just us two


Oh, hi.

Go home to sleep.

Take Harriet. Ask your mother
to make sure you can sleep.

I'll take care of the shop.

Hello, young lady.

Is your father here?
- Yes.

What are you doing here?

I came to see my son.

And my grandchildren.

Dad, someone's at the door.

You're leaving right now.
You have no business here.

No-one wants you here. Get out.

Do you hear?
- ls it up to you?

Just a moment. Wait.

If he's staying, I'll go right now.

And don't try to ask me
to come here and babysit anymore.

Give me your coat and come in.

Did you hear me?


This is none of your business.

So you crawl back
with your hand outstretched?

Now that Olavi has become wealthy.
- Mother!

You know I visited often.

But you always threw me out.

Once Olavi threw my arse in the snow.

And he did the right thing!

Mother! You're free to leave or stay.

It's all right, Harriet.
This is your grandfather.

Hello, Harriet.
- Hello.

That skinny little boy

is only ten years old

His messy, curly hair

disappears behind the stairs

He's just a little boy
exactly like the others

He knows that all the sunny days
have also shadows

He whistles when he scurries
through his murky alleys

where tourists walk and lassies talk
every night

It's so nice to finally meet you.

You have no idea
how much I enjoy this.

Seeing you and especially
the younger generation.

Your grandchildren.
- You've accomplished something, son.

A pretty flock like this.

But the kids
are bound to be beautiful,

since their mother is
so beautiful and good-natured.

I'm sure you've heard a lot about me.

I haven't been a perfect father.
I've had a messy life.

And problems with alcohol.

Well, no father is perfect.

But I guess Olavi inherited
his musicality from you.

Yeah, I guess it was good
that I set you on the piano.

It was. I'm glad you did.

I just mean it wasn't for nothing.

If it helped you to create all this.

A fancy setting,
and life on the right track.

Excuse me.

Excuse us,
could Mr. Virta sign these for us?

We were having dinner,
but all right.

Thank you.
- To Seija.

Is it always like this?

Mostly, yes.

He knows the alleys
and their shades

He's never ever lost his way

His mother doesn't ever stop him

from running through
the unsafe alleys

Any fatherly advise

he's never got in his life

That skinny little boy

is only ten years old

But this very cheerful beat

he picked up in the streets

He is only ten years old!

Don't you want to sit, Mr. Viljanen?

Thanks, but I'd rather stand.

Viljanen is standing straight
on his back

With so much booze,
others would be slack

But a musician can take
all the drink he craves

Only a gentleman
can drink with such grace

A drink to that.
- Indeed.

You fucking Virta can't even
write songs. Everyone knows it.

Does anyone know this citizen?

You've bought songs with booze
and put your own name on them.

Oh. Do you have anything to sell
besides that snotty tie?


Don't, you fucking...

Don't start jumping down my throat!

Goddamn operetta clown!

Okay, I think that was the last call.

Hello. I'm Viljanen.

All right,
an after-party at my place.

Thanks, but Topi and I
will share a taxi to Sorrento.

Butler, put the drinks and
the broken glassware on my tab.

That sloven can't afford this.

I fucking can. Bring it on.

Well, you can charge
this gentleman, then.

You bet!

How are you, son?

Just fine.

More gigs than ever,
and the records sell like hot cakes.

That's excellent.
- Yes.

So... I thought I'd ask up front.

What happened between you
and mother back then...

Was it just alcohol or...



Did you know, son,
that I used to be a shoemaker?

Goddamn, of course I did.

A shoemaker went from house to house,
stayed a week or two,

and made shoes for the whole family.

And every night, the man of the house
would offer him alcohol.

So that the shoemaker
would give him a discount.

Many of us got hooked.

Even me.

Plenty of people
like to buy me drinks, too.

Things at home are a bit dense.

I thought you might have experience.

Who are you?

Don't you remember me, old man?

Don't, don't!

Do you know that
I'm Olavi Virta's father?

Yeah, you think I'm completely senile

and don't understand a thing,
but listen, you fucking brat.

I can tell you that I used to know

your father very well.


Well, let's drink to that.

He's a great man.


How are you?

Where are you?
- In Tampere.

Are you coming home?
- Yes.

How's the baby?
- Here she is, cooing.

Will you put the phone
on Sheila's ear?

Peekaboo! Sheila.

It's dad here.
Dad is going to sing a few songs,

and then dad will come home. Sheila!

I have to go. Bye.

Well, bye.

Is Olavi here?
- Who is asking?

I am. ls he here?

Olavi is at a gig.

I can wait for him here.
- Excuse me.

Olavi promised to take me to dinner.
Just like every Friday.

I'm sure he did.

Who do you think you are?

Olavi needs me.

He can't sing without me.

All his songs, he sings them to me.

They are about me.
- You should go, miss.

The love between us is something
you know nothing about.

And you can't take it away from me!

If only you knew what it's like!

Good morning!

What are you doing?

I thought I'd make meatballs.
It's hard to wind down.

In the middle of the night?

Is it good?

Do you have to drink
all night long?

It helps me relax. After a gig.

And before a gig. And during it.

And after the gig.
At work. At home.

How long do you think
I'm going to put up with this chaos?

And you.

How long will you put up with it?

I Will.

Your women are already
barging into our home.

And that I can't handle.

She was just a crazy fan.
She made it all up.


I could've believed that
a few years ago, but not anymore.

No woman can take it

if her husband drinks
and chases every skirt!

But I've done good things, too.
Our home, the children...

How do I know how many children
you have around the parishes?

I've received letters like that, too!

All kinds of floozies claim that
their children are yours!

I'm losing my mind!

And who can blame me?

Annikki Tähti...
and Olavi Virta.

Okay, I'll buy them.

The rest is just some jazz.

You tricked me, damn it.
- A deal is a deal.

What are you up to, boys?

Where did you get these?
- Pauli sold them to me.

I see.

It always pays to do business.

Was it worth the money?
- It's jazz.

You bought some good jazz.

What's your name, lad?
- Vesa-Matti.

Vesa-Matti what?
- Loiri.

I see. Vesa-Matti starts listening
and playing jazz, then. Eh?

- You might make a living out of it.

Or out of that.

Never take anything without
permission again. - Okay.

I'm going on the road again. See you.
- See you.

Long gone is my bustling life

And I don't have a love or a wife

My horse used to run himself sore

Now I don't need to beat him no more

Nobody in this world misses me

The cold wind is my only company

Horseman, there is no need to hurry

You cannot escape your destiny

What are you doing?
- Play amongst yourselves, damn it.

I'm off.

When did you get so drunk?

You had some, too.
- You have to do your job!

We agreed not to drink
before gigs this time.

Look who's preaching, goddamn!

I preach because I'm the boss!
I'm responsible if we don't play.

Here he is. Lock him up
for a while, so he can rest.

Don't touch me! You fucking pigs!

Goddamn, let go of me!

I'm an artist!
I'm an artist, for fuck's sake!

I see. Let's pack up and go home.

Aren't you going to play anymore?

How do we play
without an accordionist?

No, this is unacceptable.
- Bye!

Hey. Hey!


Olavi Virta's record shop.

"The assistant police chief Ruuth
in llomantsi had discovered

that the lead singer was so drunk

that the doorman had to lift him up
on his feet repeatedly."

Bloody hell. It's all rubbish.

That was the tenth gig
that got cancelled.

"People started demanding
the band or their money back."

"But the only one who came back
on stage was the accordionist."

Every paper is full of the same lies.
Week after week.

That is not going to help!

I know. I need something stronger.

Olavi Virta's record shop.


I should've been there,
so you wouldn't have had to use him.

Things would be different.
You wouldn't be screwed.

It's not your fault.

I was the one
who hired the group for the tour.

What's done is done.

Every company has stopped delivering
records until the bills get paid.

All the gigs for the next two months
have been cancelled.

I managed to book a gig
for next week.

Now you're coming with me because...

Yeah, yeah. Listen.

Have something to eat.
I'll be there soon.

The bank refuses
to continue our mortgage!

Because the instalments
haven't been paid in time.

Take it one day at a time.
Don't think about tomorrow.

Everything will sort itself out.
Or we can sell the whole bloody flat

and use that money
to pay what we can.

I'll be right there.

Olavi Virta, I presume.

Who's asking?
- My duty is to repossess this car

due to unpaid debts.

Here are the official documents.

In the middle of my tour?

I almost forgot.

So this is how it is?



To Stockholm.

I got a job there.

I see.

You're taking everything from me,
but you can't take my voice.

So you also lost your job
at Levytukku?

So I bloody did.

I guess it was partly my own fault
for not doing the job properly.

So you don't have
a place to record anymore?

I guess not.
Minor is the poor man's major.

But you go to Stockholm
every week to see your kids.

I have,yes.

Last time they didn't even let me in.

I never thought it'd be this hard.

That's life.

But hey, there was a big crowd
at yesterday's gig.

There was.

But we don't have
too many gigs these days.

And this won't sustain you boys
for very long, either.

That's true.

Should we,

in spite of everything, take
a few drinks when we get to town?



It's Jaakko Salo, hello.

Hello. What's up?

I thought that you could stop by
here at the Scandia studio

when you've got the time.
- Sure. I'll stop by.

All right. Good.

See you, bye.
- Bye.

Now that we have a contract,
I thought

we could also record some of your
old songs again for Scandia.

For example
"Night, You Let Me Forget"

"Red Leaves", and so on.

Fine by me. I know the songs.

Yeah, and the equipment is
a lot better than after the war.

And this is a song
by an Italian composer, Malgoni.

"Guarda Che Luna". Reino Helismaa
translated it into Finnish.

I added a saxophone solo.
I told Seppo Rannikko

to use a stiff reed
and play like Sonny Rollins.


Let's sing it away.
- All right.

Press the record button, Arska.

The silvery moon shines

on the calm sea

There can never be again

an evening like this

I'm waiting in vain

for you, my darling

The moon goes hiding in the clouds,
the sea is murky

I feel this longing

My heart is aching

I know my happiness is now

again deserted

You watch the moon
with someone else now

Another man has taken you now

The silvery moon shines

on the calm sea

The silvery moon shines

on the calm sea

There can never be again

an evening like this

I'm waiting in vain

for you, my darling

The moon goes hiding in the clouds,
the sea is murky

I feel this longing

My heart is aching

I know my happiness is now

again deserted

You watch the moon
with someone else now

Another man has taken you now

Never again

an evening like this

No, never!

This is not going to work.

You behaved a couple of months.
Then you reverted to your old habits.

Come on. Everything is all right.

We appealed against
the drink-driving verdict.

Then we'll see what happens.

We know what will happen.

And it's not just that.
Nothing has changed.

I promise that...
- Don't.

Don't make promises you can't keep.

It's better that way.

But you like your job at Stockmann.

Mother looks after the kids.

I have plenty of work,
the records sell, and...

Everything else is fine!

It's just that I can't trust you.

At all.

Think about the children.
- They're all I think about.

They can't handle
new disappointments.

No-one can.


- Don't.

So the maestro
had to relearn how to talk

after the stroke?

To talk and...

...to walk.

But you can still sing.


Doesn't it feel bitter to get dragged
all over the country by managers?

To sing a few songs
and be gawped at by people.

I am a singer.
- Sure, sure.

But you must know
that they're leeching off you.

Making money
and taking advantage of you.


Unlike you journalists.
- Yes. Sure, sure.

And now you live here, in Pispala.

In Hulda's loving care.
Where did you find her?

When Olavi asked
if I could help him,

I asked what kind of help he needed.

He said nothing special.

Just cooking and doing the laundry.

When Olavi had to go
to the hospital again,

I picked up
his few belongings from his flat.

And then he moved here.

People say all kinds of things.

But I'm old enough to be his mother.
- Sure.

Have you stayed
in contact with Irene?

Your wife.

My ex wife. And very rarely.

We had an idea at the office...

The magazine could take you abroad,
the maestro and Irene.

And we'd write an article
about the trip.

You could reminisce together,

and maybe the southern sun
will even rekindle your flame.

Maestro, I'm really sorry
about their behaviour.

No need to be sorry.

I can tell you that

this happens to you, too, some day.

When summer flees,

the leaves in trees

they start glowing,

shining so brightly

It's like a longing

that leaves a memory

so beautiful

but sorrowful

Just a while longer

leaves will glow

And their splendour

will then be gone

The leaves of our lost love
are now rotten

The wind picks them up
as it goes

I hope sometimes that
you remember it too

The summer when we were in love,
just us two

The sun seemed to smile
so warmly at me

when I, darling, walked
beside you on the street

The summer of love
did not last very long

The winter came,
now it's all gone

All that was left
is a mere memory

I feel my heart burning with agony

If you have some beautiful memories,

then you can be a wealthy man

You can't ever give them away

Just hide them into your heart

What do you think, Irene?
Has this trip made you closer?

Well, you could say that.

Can I write that
"the old flame was rekindled,

and two hearts found each other again
beneath the southern cross"?

Maybe nothing quite like that.

Well, we'll see. Thank you.

"Two hearts found each other again
beneath the southern cross"?

Yeah, the things they come up with...


Did you hope that we...

I have missed you.

I've also missed the man
I fell in love with.

And I've never found anyone else

who would have meant something.

Someone like you.

That's quite a thing to say.

After all those women.
- Yeah...

I've never found anyone else, either.

I guess I've always compared
them to you.

You set the bar pretty high.

Despite everything.

Even though
this might sound childish,

I have to say

that you...

...were the love of my life.

You were, and still are.

But you must know it too that
nothing could come of us anymore.

I know.

I know that.

Olavi Virta was
the first entertainer in Finland

who was granted
an artist's pension in June 1972.

He received it for one month
before he died.