Peter von Bagh, Jouko Aaltonen

Lauluja Utopiasta

2017 Finland
57min. • Finnish. English subtitles.
Theme: Rokumentti selection
16.11.2017 | Time: 17.00 | Venue: Tapio 3 | BUY TICKET

Songs of the communist utopia

Songs from Utopia (“Lauluja utopiasta”) explores the career of Agit-Prop, the most famous communist vocal group in Finland. The film also offers an interesting account on the recent world history, ranging from the suicide of the Chilean president Allende to revealing the illusion that was DDR. With the decline of communism, Agit-Prop's message disappeared from the mainstream arts and culture - only to return in later decades.

Although the documentary is first and foremost a film about social issues, it is also a powerful music documentary. It is a story of the four harmonious voices, their international success, and how the political movement and its legacy influenced later groups, most notably Ultra Bra. Director Jouko Aaltonen picked up Peter von Bagh's unfinished project and fulfilled the legendary film persona's dream of an Agit-Prop documentary.

What makes Songs from Utopia unsettling is how the faults and grievances in world politics have remained pretty much the same during Agit-Prop's entire existence. The political singing quartet has declared their message from the 1960s to the present day, and they are never planning to stop!