The Class (2007 film)

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The Class
Estonian: Klass
File:Klass (film) poster.jpg
DVD Cover
Directed by Ilmar Raag
Written by Ilmar Raag
Starring Vallo Kirs
Pärt Uusberg
Lauri Pedaja
Paula Solvak
Music by Martin Kallasvee
Paul Oja
Timo Steiner
Cinematography Kristjan-Jaak Nuudi
Edited by Tambet Tasuja
Distributed by Estonian Culture Film
Release dates
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  • 16 March 2007 (2007-03-16)
Running time
99 minutes
Country Estonia
Language Estonian

The Class (Estonian: Klass) is an Estonian film about school violence directed by Ilmar Raag. It was released on March 16, 2007. There has also been produced a 7 episode lasting series that tells what happens after the initial movie, titled Class: Life After (Estonian: Klass: Elu pärast, can also be traslated "for life").


The Estonian teenager Joosep (Pärt Uusberg) is being bullied by his entire high school class, the ring leader of them all is Anders (Lauri Pedaja), his accomplice Paul (Mikk Mägi) and three other friends Toomas (Joonas Paas), Tiit (Virgo Ernits) and Olav (Karl Sakrits). Anders encourages the class to continually beat up Joosep, and harass him in other ways as well, such as fully undressing him and then pushing him in the girls' changing room. His classmate Kaspar tries to protect him and breaks from the group, which results in the violence being directed to him as well. Also, in a homophobic atmosphere Joosep and Kaspar are ridiculed for supposedly having gay feelings for each other. Nevertheless, when the school administration and Joosep's parents try to find out who is to blame for the treatment Joosep has been receiving, the class unanimously but falsely accuses Kaspar of mistreating him.

After Joosep's parents find out that their son is being beaten while attending school, Joosep's mother informs the school administration. At last the class as a whole is rightly blamed. Joosep runs home after this crying only to encounter his father who then after learning what had happened, tries to encourage his son to fight back, and demonstrates a fighting technique by giving the boy an additional beating. Out of revenge for this, the class assembles on a beach, calling both Kaspar and Joosep there by writing emails to them showing each other as fake sender. Once there, they force Kaspar to fellate Joosep, at knife point, and photograph the sexual act without showing the knife.

The boys decide to avenge themselves. Joosep steals two pistols, a bolt-action rifle and ammunition from his militaristic father's gun safe, and the two proceed to school. As they proceed, students and teachers notice the guns in their hands, when a teacher encounters them about it they simply walk past and Joosep tells her to call the police. Before entering the cafeteria to shoot their bullies, Kerli (Triin Tenso), a previous victim of the class and who witnessed the incident at the beach, decides to let the two have there revenge and goes pass them. They begin the massacre on the students responsible for their torment. Joosep shoots Tiit at close range and then shoots Olav in the head. To their regret, Kaspar accidentally shoots an eighth grade female student from another class while trying to shoot Anders. Toomas tries to grab the gun from Joosep but ends up getting shot in the abdomen, then Anders and Paul manage to restrain him and take his rifle, however Kaspar saves Joosep by shooting Paul in the head, just before Anders could reach the exit and escape he is shot in the shoulder and is executed by Joosep. Finally Joosep and Kaspar, facing one another, each aim a gun at their own head, decide to commit suicide together after counting to three. Joosep pulls the trigger and dies, but the film ends with Kaspar still standing there with his gun aiming at his head.


Critical reception

It currently holds an 89% approval rating among users on Rotten Tomatoes.[1]


In 2007, the movie received an award from Karlovy Vary International Film Festival and Warsaw International Film Festival. The movie was also the official Estonian submission to the Best Foreign Language Film Category of the 80th Academy Awards.[2]

Political invocations

Since the movie was released, two school shootings have taken place in nearby Finland — the Jokela school shooting and the Kauhajoki school shooting. In analysis of both events, the movie has been raised as an illustration by columnists and other media pundits.[citation needed]


External links