• Golden Globe Awards

One Last Deal (Finland)

After successfully collaborating on 2015’s Golden Globe-nominated The Fencer, director Klaus HäröOne Last Deal, a grandfather and his grandson reconnect while finding the origin of a painting called Portrait of a Man by an Unknown Master. 

“Anna told me about this idea when we were working on The Fencer. Thematically it is like Hemingway’s “The Old Man and the Sea”. The old man should understand (it’s time) to retire but he is obsessed with his profession,” Härö tells. He liked the premise of the story and immediately asked if he could direct the film. “Anna inherited an art store from her mother so she knows the art world,” continues Härö. “She analyzed, rationalized and wrote scenes precisely. She has an extraordinary eye for what works in a movie.”One Last Deal, Härö’s sixth feature, premiered at the Toronto International Film Festival last year. In the movie, he reunited with actor Heikki Nousiainen, a decade after their last collaboration in the drama Letters to Father Jacob. They have a special connection. “When I was 13 I saw Heikki’s play. Years later I asked him to act in my student movie and he agreed. Ever since I graduated I wanted to work with him again, but he was busy with his work in theater. Finally, when he retired, my dream came true.”
In the film, Nousiainen plays Olavi, a workaholic but mediocre art dealer. His art boutique is located next door to a thriving auction house in present-day Helsinki. There, the painting by an unknown master catches his eye. He is the only one that is sure it is a valuable masterpiece. “One of the themes of the movie is who decides the value of art. The other an homage for small, independent stores. The third is to get a second chance to reconnect with family.”

While Olavi is in the middle of researching the painting’s history, his estranged daughter asks for help: her son needs an internship. After some hesitation, Olavi decides that Otto (Amos Brotherus) could be useful. As they search through old museum catalogs and art books for clues to the painting’s origin, the stubborn grandfather and feisty 15-year-old grow closer. And after all, Otto finds an important clue. “Otto is a typical Finnish teenager in that he is very independent. We tend to raise kids to take care of themselves early on and we appreciated that quality. But at the same time, their friends become more important than family and sometimes we forget that family is always there – in good and bad.”