Juha (1999 film)

Juha is a 1999 Finnish film produced, written, and directed by Aki Kaurismäki. The film is loosely based on a famous 1911 novel by the Finnish author Juhani Aho marking this as the fourth time the novel was adapted for the screen.[1] The original story takes place in the 18th century but Kaurismäki's remake is set in the 1970s. It tells the story of a love triangle where a simple peasant woman leaves her husband after falling in love with a modern city slicker. Juha is a silent film shot in black-and-white with the dialogue coming in the form of intertitles.[2] Special release prints with titles in several different languages were produced for international distribution.

DVD cover
Directed byAki Kaurismäki
Produced byAki Kaurismäki
Written by
Music byAnssi Tikanmäki
CinematographyTimo Salminen
Edited byAki Kaurismäki
Release date
  • 13 February 1999 (1999-02-13)
Running time
78 minutes
BudgetFIM 4,773,394 (approx. € 807,000)


Marja (Kati Outinen) is a simple peasant woman married to her older husband Juha (Sakari Kuosmanen). They lead a very simple country life, spending most of their days farming and tending to their livestock. Marja's world is turned upside down when Shemeikka (André Wilms) comes to the happily married couple asking them for help with his broken down sports convertible and a place to spend the night. As Juha works to repair the car, Shemeikka attempts to lure Marja to leave Juha and come to the city with him. A hesitant Marja does not want to leave her husband at first but ultimately gives in to temptation after dreaming of a wonderful new life in a big city. Shemeikka and Marja leave for the city but Marja's dream quickly becomes a nightmare when Shemeikka enslaves her in a brothel.

Cast and characters

Critical response

On Rotten Tomatoes, Juha has a rating of 40%, based on five reviews, with an average rating of 6.3/10.[3]

See also


  1. Holden, Stephen. Juha (1999), The New York Times. Accessed August 18, 2008.
  2. Kirkish, Joe. Club Finndigo to present Kaurismäki's Juha Jan. 21, Film.com, January 19, 2005. Accessed August 18, 2008.
  3. "Juha (1999)". Rotten Tomatoes. Fandango. Retrieved 10 April 2017.
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