A young woman, Iris, finds herself in a foreign city all alone, haunted by her past. She wanders the empty streets, until she meets a young man, Niko, who tries to dig deeper into her bleak past.

VIRTAUS is a Finnish short film made by a passionate team of young filmmakers. Passion definitely goes a long way here as the film’s timeline reaches close to 30 minutes. But don’t be fooled by the length, the well structured storyline and progression runs through quite smoothly. The film follows a young woman who finds herself in a foreign city all alone, haunted by her past. Until she meets Niko, a young man who tries to dig deeper into her bleak past.

We tend to go about our daily lives without actually stopping to listen or to look around us. The stories, experiences and thoughts people hold are extraordinary, we could learn so much more about this world and our society if we actually stopped and listened. I learned this while travelling in southern Spain in the spring of 2018. I met a person who had gone through a similar experience as Iris in our short film. Rather than asking about her past, I listened. And one night, that person opened up. That experience opened my eyes. It stuck with me, so I knew this was a story worth telling. And this experience inspired me to write VIRTAUS.

Since this is our first live action short film, Daniel was the only one who I really knew before the production. So we reached out to actors, and after some time we found Emilia and Julius, who had been acting in local theatres. Emilia had no prior film acting experience, which amazed me how well she got into the role.

The whole team became really good friends throughout the filming, which is probably the greatest thing that came from the production. Since everybody on the film are non-professionals, nobody got paid. So the film was made purely out of love for film and storytelling.

The crew is currently in in pre-production on their next short film, which is scheduling to be finished in the fall of 2019. Matias says he sees these short films as an essential part of his journey becoming a feature film director, and “hopefully I get to help others on their journey to whatever it is they strive towards”.