As a war rages on in the province of Bougainville in Papua New Guinea, a young girl becomes transfixed by the Charles Dickens novel Great Expectations, which is being read at school by the only white man in the village. In 1991, a war over a copper mine in the South Pacific tore the island of Bougainville apart. The reclusive “Popeye” (Hugh Laurie) offers the children in fourteen-year-old Matilda’s tiny village an escape with Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations. But on an island at war, fiction can have dangerous consequences.
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Living somewhere in present-day Quebec, Boris Malinowski has achieved all his goals. A freethinker, open-minded and proud, he also displays a certain arrogance when it comes to his successes. For some time now, his wife Béatrice, a Canadian government minister, has been bedridden, suffering from a mysterious depression. To escape from his wife’s agony, Boris begins a relationship with a colleague, Helga, and gets close to Klara, a young woman who works as a maid in Boris’s home. The sudden appearance of a stranger in his life forces Boris to come face-to-face with the world, with everything he takes for granted, with all his certainties.
Jake Huard, from a shipbuilders family, promised his dying mother he’ld make it to Anapolis Naval Academy. Thanks to tenaciously bugging a Congressman, he’s selected despite dubious grades. Once inside, Jake soon proves sub-standard academically. Constantly challenged to his limits, repeatedly made the ‘over-cocky’ reason for the entire class to suffer, Jake nearly quits, but after facing his utterly un-supportive father’s gloating returns just in time. Stubborn Jake finds support withs mates as well as Senor Ali, his lover-to-be, and a discipline he may excel in: the ‘brigade’ boxing tournament, open to all ranks.
When a recently retired military officer Colonel is tapped by his old friend to take over the military division to help save declining Stone Creek Academy, he immediately clashes with academics dean, a civilian woman whose “touchy-feely” methods are at complete odds with his.
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Jussi Vares falls in love with a beautiful brunette – only to lose her in a horrible way. After dating Sole a few weeks, her body is found in a bird-watching tower. The investigations come to a standstill, until Vares promises to solve a mystery of messy denunciation letters. Before the letters reveal their secret, a lot of things happen. A gun-for-hire, Stahanov, gets an assignment. Sole’s brother finds his wife in the arms of a wrong man and goes on a rampage, accompanied by a black cat. In the end the clues lead to a familiar person and more death in unavoidable