Viru. Embassy of Freedom
"Viru. Embassy of Freedom" is a documentary about the history of the legendary Hotel Viru in Tallinn. The author of the film is Margit Kilumets and it focuses on Estonia and the Estonians’ memories of the legendary hotel.
The documentary chronicles the varied history of this extraordinary building located in the heart of the capital of Estonia. The hotel is much more than just a building – it is a monument and an icon. The interior conceals legendary stories of the people who built it and stayed there. The film examines the phenomenon of Hotel Viru, both its political and symbolic importance.
Interviewees like Sofi Oksanen, Maimu Berg, Eva Lille, Kuno Plaan and other public figures reveal the many facets of the Viru legend, including the politics, the prostitution, the KGB, the businessmen and variety shows involved.
The film also shows plenty of archival footage, which has a nostalgic effect, at times, and a completely comical one at others. These are human stories – interesting, tragic, funny, absurd retrospections of our common history. The first interview seen by the Estonian audience is with the founder of the hotel, Finnish businessman Mikko Repo. Unfortunately this interview was also his last public appearance as he died at the end of 2012.
The author of VIRU. EMBASSY OF FREEDOM is Margit Kilumets. The film is produced by Riina Sildos, directed by Margit Kilumets and Andres Lepasar, cinematography by Ivar Heinmaa and Pelle Vellvoog in Estonia and Jouko Seppälä in Finland and the music is composed by Timo Steiner.
The film was co-produced by Amrion and the Finnish studio Kinosto OY and production was supported by the Estonian Film Foundation and the Estonian Cultural Endowment.
Premiere: April 2013
Original title: Viru. Vabaduse saatkond
Directors and screenwriters: Margit Kilumets, Taru Mäkelä
Camera: Ivar Heinmaa, Jouko Seppälä
Producer: Riina Sildos
Co-producer: Taru Mäkelä
Production company: Amrion (Estonia)
Co-production company: Kinosto Oy (Finland)
57 min / Blu-ray / Colour / Dolby Stereo