Life in Four Elements

If you’ve ever thought that things such as the stock market, fast career development, and choosing the right type of smartphone are somehow essential to your wellbeing, you should really see Life in Four Elements. This film reminds us of the things that are truly essential: earth, water, air, and fire.

In Life in Four Elements, the director Natalie Hallaintroduces us to a free diver, a BASE jumper, a firefighter and a cave researcher. Each one of the four protagonists is shown in their element, revealing the deep love they have for what they do. The free diver relaxes best underwater, and the cave researcher even hopes to die inside a mountain. Halla’s film helps the viewer understand the feelings of these protagonists; the four elements that surround them are so powerful that everything else feels mundane in comparison.

The Spanish fire fighter Pako Rivas believes that all fire fighters have pyromaniac tendencies. Even though he himself burned a house down as a child, Rivas has since dedicated his life to putting out fires and saving lives. In one haunting scene, he describes the moment a fire fighter loses control of a fire, and the feeling of being one with the flames. The film truly conveys the feeling of the four elements being something mystical, almost mythical – and yet simultaneously very real.

This documentary is visually as stunning as the elements themselves. Watching the film, the viewer is taken under the surface and into curving caves, to the fury of the flames and carried away by the wind.

Sirje Niitepõld / Translation: Oona Juutinen

Languages: Finnish, German, Spanish, English
Subtitles: English

  • Name in Original Language: Neljä elementtiä / Life in Four Elements
  • Director: Natalie Halla
  • Country: Finland
  • Year: 2017
  • Length: 73 min
  • Age limit: null
  • Cinematography: Teemu Liakka
  • Editing: Benjamin Mercer
  • Audio: Juha Hakanen, Benjamin Mercer
  • Music: Michael Andreas Haeringer, Panu Altio
  • Production: Marko Röhr / MRP Matila Röhr Productions


  • Cinema Artis, hall 1: Sunday, 04.02 - 18:00