The Finnish Pimenpirtin Havitya was based on a novel by Maila Talvio. Like the book, the film is a melancholy tale of despair and lost opportunities, leavened by dollops of sentiment. Essentially, the film served as a comeback attempt for silent-screen favorite Urho Sommersali. This alone assured good business for the film, which otherwise was not highly regarded by contemporary critics. Outside of Scandinavia, Pimenpirtin Havitya received limited release under the highly appropriate title Despair.
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