Bad Hair Friday

This entry is part 3 of 8 in the series Raindance 2012

Released: 2012
Directors: Andres Kõpper, Arun Tamm
Starring: Priit Loog, Risto Proosa, Kirke Algma

A fun, violent, gangster, romantic thriller

A couple of years ago my husband and I embarked upon a crazy journey round Europe with a couple of friends. Our aim was to visit all 50 countries of Europe in one year. We didn’t quite make it (although I do still want to finish the tour) and we did manage to visit quite a good number of countries. One of the best weekends we had was in the Baltic nations visiting Latvia, Lithuania and Estonia. In that one weekend I developed quite strong opinions on how each country was handling its independence from the Soviet Union. Lithuania was a sleepy place, Latvia was desperately trying to become more modern and balance the young democracy against the rich history. Estonia though was an enigma, it genuinely felt confused, as though it didn’t know where it was going. There was a feeling of being stuck in the Soviet Era and not knowing how to move on.

This sense of being slightly mixed up and not fitting easily into any category is very true of Estonian film Bad Hair Friday. It’s not a gangster film, or a romance, or a thriller, or a love story. But it has all of these elements running through it without actually being able to be described as any one of those genres.

Taking place over the period of one Friday, the film begins gently with lovely everyman Tony (a handsome and impressive Priit Loog) being rejected by the girl to whom he has just proposed. To cheer him up, two friends suggest a day in the city. As the day goes on other stories of Tallinn’s residents unfold and intertwine, culminating in violence, death and a very very bad Friday. The characters include a pair of prostitutes desperate for a better life, a lovelorn shop assistant and his girlfriend, a gang of junkies and a Nietzsche quoting mob enforcer.

There’s nothing startling original about Bad Hair Friday – in fact it reminded me quite strongly of Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels, Go and in one completely unexpected mid-credits scene there was even a hint of Gregory’s Girl. I’m not sure if the hat-tip to Bill Forsyth was intentional but it was very welcome and left me feeling event warmer towards the film than had already been. Just because something isn’t original doesn’t necessarily make it bad and that’s the case here.

The performances were generally very good, I particularly enjoyed Priit Loog as Tony and Risto Proosa as the spoiled little rich boy with the gangster father. The film has a dark streak of humour running through it and while it’s probably not as funny as it thinks it is, it’s amusing enough to make the moments of real brutality particularly shocking and some of the characters’ endings quite upsetting.

There’s nothing particularly new about Bad Hair Friday but it’s a fun watch and fans of films such as Lock, Stock will find a lot to like here. A more than decent watch.

Bad Hair Friday is screening on Friday 5th October at 21.00 and Sunday 7th October at 12.00

Previous and next posts in this series:<< City SlackerTop Ten:Raindance Festival Facts >>
If you enjoyed this post, please consider leaving a comment or subscribing to the RSS feed to have future articles delivered to your feed reader.

Speak Your Mind