Ahoy Captain Cats here and today I’m going to review a film that came out in 2017 that is about a Finnish artist that with his homoerotic art, influence the gay culture in the late twentieth century and that film is Tom of Finland.
The film is about the life of artist Touko Valio Laaksonen and throughout the film you see a lot of what he had to go threw in life from being a soldier in World War II to creating his erotic illustration, the birth of “Kake”, his trip to LA and so much more. We also see what it took for his artwork to be published in the USA and also how his work was affected during the AIDS outbreak during the 1980s and his impact on the gay culture as well during this time.
From start to finish this film was good, it has this very personal feel and vibe in terms of how we see Touko, how is portrayed by Pekka Strang, trying to be who he wants to be. From moments when we see how he gave birth to Kake and creating his Tom of Finland persona, Strang shows these slights moments of joy that I think makes the viewer see this side of Touko as a person who cares about his work and not caring about what his critics and society think of him as. The supporting cast was great as well especially Jessica Grabowsky as Touko’s sister Kaija, who challenges him in both art and his personal lifestyle and choices.
Tom of Finland is worth the viewing but remember this film is not for kids and also watch this film with an open mind and not stereotyping it as a “gay film” due to what he has done with his art for the gay culture and its impact to that and erotic illustration.