Touko Laaksonen, a decorated officer, returns home after a harrowing and heroic experience serving his country in World War II, but life in Finland during peacetime proves equally distressing. He finds post-war Helsinki rampant with homophobic persecution, and men around him even being pressured to marry women and have children. Touko finds refuge in his liberating art, specialising in homoerotic drawings of muscular men, free of inhabitations. His work – made famous by his signature ‘Tom of Finland’ – became the emblem of a generation of men and fanned the flames of a gay revolution.

Director Dome Karukoski

Writer Aleksi Bardy (Heart of a Lion, The Border)

Cast Pekka Strang, Lauri Tilkanen, Werner Daehn, Jessica Grabowski

Producers Aleksi Bardy, Mila Haavisto, Annika Sucksdorff

Production Credits Helsinki-filmi, Anagram Vast, Fridthjof Film, Neutrinos Productions


Dome Karukoski

Dome Karukoski is known for his humane and original films, that have attracted both large audiences and critical acclaim in Finland and abroad. His first three films The Grump (2014), Heart of a Lion (2012) and Lapland Odyssey (2010) all had their premieres at the Toronto Film Festival. Tom of Finland is his English language debut.

Festival Section Year Location