The Cuckoo (Russian: «Кyкyшкa», translit. Kukushka) is a 2002 Russian historical comedy drama film directed by Aleksandr Rogozhkin. It takes place during World War II from the perspective of opposing Soviet and Finnish soldiers stranded at a Sami woman's farmhouse. "Kukushka" was the nickname given by Soviet soldiers to Finnish cuckoo snipers, who ambushed their targets from a purpose-built tree-branch-nest. Thus the title refers to both Veikko (the sniper) and Anni (whose name means cuckoo in Sami, and who is a lone woman living in the forest, much like a cuckoo).
September 1944. Several days before Finland, a co-belligerent of Nazi Germany, pulls out of the Continuation War against the Soviet Union, Veikko (Ville Haapasalo), a Finnish soldier, is turned in by his Finnish and German compatriots for being a pacifist and, in their eyes, a would-be deserter. As a punishment, the young man is placed in shackles, chained to a rock outcrop in a remote Lapland forest, left with nothing but a few supplies, rifle and ammunition - effectively made a forced Kamikaze kukushka sniper. To ensure his willingness to fight, they dress him in the uniform of the Waffen-SS, as Soviet soldiers felt little mercy towards SS men. Days pass, and after several failed attempts, Veikko succeeds in freeing himself and heads for safety, shackles still attached.
Meanwhile, Ivan (Viktor Bychkov), a Captain in the Red Army accused of anti-Soviet correspondence, is arrested by the NKVD secret police. En route to his court martial, Soviet planes accidentally bomb the vehicle carrying the disgraced captain, killing the driver and Ivan's guard. Veikko, at this stage still chained to the rock, witnesses the bombing through his riflescope.