Directed by Jessica Oreck • 2013 • United States, Finland
Brothers Aarne and Lasse Aatsinki are cowboys of the Arctic. Quiet but good-natured, daredevilish but humble, rugged but gentle, and exceptionally knowledgeable when it comes to their little slice of wilderness, they live, along with their wives and children, well north of the Arctic Circle in Finnish Lapland, where they are the leaders of a collective of traditional reindeer herders who manage the last group of wild reindeer in all of Finland. Over the course of one year, AATSINKI follows the families, quietly observing their seasonal routines and the difficulties and joys of a life so closely tied to the land. Theirs is a story of action and work, of small moments between husband and wife, father and daughter, animal and man, human and landscape that invites weighty questions about our own place in nature.