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Film / Ariel

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Ariel is a 1988 movie by Finnish director Aki Kaurismäki. Finnish coal miner Taisto Kasurinen goes to the city to find a job after the mine is closed and his father commits suicide. On the way there, he's robbed of all his money. When he reaches the city, he gets a parking ticket. Things go downhill from there.

Provides examples of:

  • Bittersweet Ending: Mikkonen dies, but Taisto escapes to Mexico with Irmeli and her son.
  • Black Comedy: Typical for Kaurismäki's movies. The clearest example might be towards the end: Kasurinen has complained the entire movie about the roof on his convertible not working. When Mikkonen has been stabbed and is bleeding out, he says "What does this button do?", and presses it. The roof starts going up, and Mikkonen dies as it does so.
  • Can't Get Away with Nuthin'/Karmic Misfire: When Kasurinen confronts the man who had robbed him, the man pulls a knife on him. Kasurinen disarms him and starts beating him, and is promptly arrested and sentenced to two years in prison for assault, attempted robbery, possession of a weapon and resisting arrest.
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  • Chance Meeting Between Antagonists: Kasurinen runs into a man who robbed him earlier.
  • Disposing of a Body: Mikkonen requests to be buried at a dump after he's been stabbed. Kasurinen obliges him.
  • Faking the Dead: Mikkonen fakes suicide by hanging to lure the prison guard into his and Kasurinen's cell in order to facilitate their escape.
  • Gory Discretion Shot: We don't get to see the aftermath of Taisto's father's suicide, only Taisto's reaction to it.
  • Great Escape: Kasurinen and Mikkonen break out of prison.
  • Grievous Bottley Harm: Kasurinen is hit over the head with a bottle and robbed.
  • Had to Come to Prison to Be a Crook: Or at least to graduate from petty crime to bank robbery and murder.
  • Jail Bake: Subverted. Kasurinen gets a cake and a book on his "birthday". The cake is thoroughly examined by the prison guard. The file is between the pages of the book.
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  • Meet Cute: Taisto meets Irmeli when she gives him a parking ticket.
  • Starts with a Suicide: Taisto's father's.
  • Vehicle Title: Ariel is the name of the ship the protagonists escape to Mexico with.