With their costumes and satanic alter egos, Finnish heavy metal band LORDI's victory in the 2006 Eurovision Song Contest gained them international acclaim. For front man Tomi, their victory was the realisation of his childhood dreams. An outcast from a young age, Tomi found solace in heavy metal and fantasy tales. Yet five years on, his band are without work and hundreds of thousands of Euros in debt. Can Tomi keep his monstrous dream alive?
"We won the Eurovision! Stand up and shout with me!"
screams Mr Lordi. Extravagantly dressed in their trademark monster costumes, LORDI stand triumphantly before thousands of adoring fans, basking in the glory of their famous victory. The band's Eurovision success was back in 2006, and was followed by a whirlwind world tour of sold out shows, international TV appearances and national adulation, and Mr Lordi himself was praised by national newspapers as "the king"
, and "a legend of our time... a true hero"
Six years on however and the brief flicker of greatness is a distant memory. Mr Lordi, real name Tomi, is a forgotten figure: his gruesome costumes and satanic alter ego a relic of the past; his band in debt for hundreds of thousands of Euros. "I felt awful when the whole Finnish nation - the same group that celebrated LORDI - just deserted us completely"
, he explains. "Every human wants to be loved - not hated and laughed at"
. But Tomi refuses to turn his back on the band that has been his lifelong passion, and is determined for Lordi to rise again. He is still writing music, still donning his monstrous costume, and still fighting to keep the band alive, explaining, "I must think of something to get us out of rock bottom and back up again"
"I'm unhappy and unwell... it's the band"
, says Leena, the keyboard player, as she explains her reasons for leaving LORDI. Following the death of their drummer and collapse of their record label, Leena's departure is only the most recent setback in Tomi's quest to recapture past glory. As his band disintegrates around him, he must risk everything for one last attempt at stardom, and he believes he has no option: "For me the only alternative to being Mr Lordi is that I'm dead... as long as I'm alive I'm Mr Lordi"
. Can Tomi keep hold of his childhood dream and lead his band back to greatness?
Official Selection, CPH:Dox 2015
Official Selection, DocPoint Film Festival 2015
Official Selection, DOXA Documentary Film Festival 2015
Official Selection, Sound on Screen Music Film Festival 2015
Winner - Best Documentary Feature, Austin Film Festival 2014
Official Selection, Noordelijk Film Festival 2014
Official Selection, Love & Anarchy 2014
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