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Touko Laaksonen, a decorated officer, returns home after a harrowing and heroic experience serving his country in World War II. But life in Finland during peacetime proves equally distressing. He finds post-war Helsinki rampant with homophobic persecution, and gay men around him are being pressured to marry women and have children.
Touko finds refuge in his liberating art: homoerotic drawings of muscular men, free of inhibitions.