Cleveland International Film Festival } March 22 – April 1, 2023 } Playhouse Square

The Little Comrade
(Seltsimees laps)

Year: 2018
Country: ESTONIA
Language: Estonian
Run Time: 98 minutes

The Little Comrade
The Little Comrade
The Little Comrade
The Little Comrade

The luminous focal point of THE LITTLE COMRADE, a curious and innocent six-year-old girl named Leelo, is unwittingly caught in a political maelstrom. Living in Soviet Estonia during the height of Joseph Stalin’s reign, she suffers through the arrest of her schoolteacher mother, who’s falsely accused of being a traitor. Her dedicated father, Feliks, is also a teacher, as well as a decorated athlete forced to hide both his medals and disdain for the Communist regime. Yet his biggest priorities are mitigating Leelo’s anguish over her mom’s absence—and protecting her from the Soviets’ growing influence over their daily lives. But as THE LITTLE COMRADE grapples with the sinister ways loyalties (and morals) evolve under oppressive governments, it never loses sight of humanity’s resilience. Leelo in particular reacts to looming threats of deportation and her own emotional heartache in realistic and deeply moving ways that end up illustrating the restorative power of tenderness and compassion. (In Estonian with subtitles) —A.Z.

CIFF43 Screenings

Wednesday, April 03, 2019 at 11:30 AM

Friday, April 05, 2019 at 7:20 PM

Saturday, April 06, 2019 at 3:25 PM

Women of the World

George Gund III Memorial Central and Eastern European Competition
Reel Women Direct Award for Excellence in Directing by a Woman


Moonika Siimets

Moonika Siimets graduated from the Baltic Film and Media School of Tallinn University and attended Judith Weston's scriptwriting and directing master classes in Los Angeles. She has directed award-winning documentaries, TV series, and short films. THE LITTLE COMRADE premiered at the Busan IFF and received the BNK Busan Bank Award (Audience Award).


Riina Sildos

Moonika Siimets

Rein Kotov

Tambet Tasuja

Principal Cast
Tambet Tuisk, Helena Maria Reisner, Yulia Aug, Eva Koldits, Liina Vahtrik, Juhan Ulfsak, Lembit Peterson, Maria Klenskaja

Film Contact
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