Director: Aki Kaurismaki
Stars: Andrew Wilms, Kati Outinen
The Finnish director Aki Kaurismaki is a kind of dour deadpan genius, and if Le Havre isn’t quite as funny as his previous work, it’s no less charming.
Set in a French port city shot and lit to look like a Hollywood backlot, the film concerns a kind old shoe shine man (Andre Wilms) who becomes the guardian of a foreign-born orphan; as the community rallies around a vulnerable outsider, Kaurismaki crafts a utopian portrait of an inclusive, generous European society.
The climax, set at a benefit concert featuring a wizened local rock and roller, is ecstatic and hilarious.