Inkeri, 75, has hit her husband on the head with a solid iron frying pan and is planning to bury him in their garden -a reasonable, but panicked solution after being belittled and picked on by him for almost 50 years. Suddenly Inkeri realises that burying Tapio is not a solution and she will be spending the rest of her life in prison.

But there may yet be a moment left to really live. Inkeri makes her sisters Sylvi and Raili join her on a trip to the Koli National Park. To do that one last ride.

So the trip begins, travelling through Finland: charming overly young hitchhikers, cars breaking down, and sinful dancing in restaurants. It’s a journey to confront the past and present where the siblings have to overcome their conflicts and reveal their secrets. During the journey, Inkeri comes across her university writings. Seeing in them a free woman with dreams, that later were suppressed by a patriarchal marriage.

In the meantime, Tapio has awoken. He’s not dead. With a sore head he embarks on a journey with a small plane to find Inkeri. In the meantime the sisters journey ends to meet Eino, who was Inkeri’s crush in her youth. Unfortunately shy Eino lost and Tapio won.

But will Eino still remember Inkeri and is Eino only madness and illusion, and would Inkeri be happier with Tapio who seems to be sincere in his effort to find reconciliation? Or will Inkeri find again that free young woman in her that desired a feminist revolution in the 70s?

With a pounding heart, Inkeri has to make the biggest choice concerning the rest of her life, a choice between happiness and convention.

Director's Statement

LADIES OF STEEL is about life - life choices, life circumstances, escaping responsibilities, dreams, finding yourself and your own voice. It’s about the importance of living in the moment and that it is never too late to start living to the potential one aims for.

LADIES OF STEEL is a celebration of older age and life. I wanted to depict elderly people as active agents, who can (still) have an influence on their own lives - and those of others. The characters in the film know how to laugh at themselves - or at least, at each other. I wish that the film touches and amuses the viewer.

This film gives me hope, hopefully to others too. There is and always will be life, its merely up to us, how we lead it. The thought that life does not end at 60, not even when you turn 80, is comforting, encouraging, enlarging and merciful.

Director's Biography

Pamela Tola is a Finnish actress, writer and director. Her breakthrough film in acting was in Dome Karukoski’s film BEAUTY AND THE BASTARD (2005), from which she got her first Jussi-nomination. She has also acted in Karukoski’s films LAPLAND ODYSSEY (2010) and HEART OF A LION (2013).

Tola started acting when she was 9-years old, as a hobby in video films and amateur theatre. Tola studied acting in the Theatre Academy of Helsinki and graduated as a Master of Theatre Arts in 2008. She published a book, "Why I act?", in 2007, which was a part of her final thesis in the theatre academy. During her academic studies, she acted in theatre Jurkka, in Helsinki.

She directed her first feature film, SWINGERS, in 2018. Prior to that she has been writing and directing short films. LADIES OF STEEL is her second feature film as a writer and director. Currently, Tola is writing and directing new projects, that will be released in the beginning of 2021.

2011 BURUNGO, short
2011 ELMA & LIISA, short

Cast & Crew

Directed by: Pamela Tola

Written by: Pamela Tola, Aleksi Bardy

Produced by: Aleksi Bardy, Dome Karukoski, Sirkka Rautiainen

Cinematography: Päivi Kettunen

Editing: Antti Reikko

Production Design: Heini Erving

Costume Design: Tiina Kaukanen

Make-Up & Hair: Riikka Virtanen

Original Score: Panu Aaltio

Sound: Panu Riikonen

Visual Effects: Tuomo Hintikka

Cast: Leena Uotila (Inkeri), Seela Sella (Raili), Saara Pakkasvirta (Sylvi)

Nominations and Awards

  • European Comedy 2020