Angel on the Right Review

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A young man returns to his native village to tend his dying mother, but an unexpected reception awaits.


Small-time thug Hamro (Pulodzoda) returns to his tiny village in Tajikistan on hearing that his mother (Miyasarova) is dying. However, not only does he find his ten year-old son and numerous creditors waiting for him, but also the situation at home is not as he was lead to believe.

A film which asks whether it's possible for a bad man to make good, writer/director Djamshed Usmonov's retelling of the parable of the prodigal son proves that the old stories are always the best, especially when they can be told in new and interesting ways. Stylistically, Usmonov's film is strongly influenced by the stark realism of contemporary Iranian cinema, and boasts a similar dark humour, meaning that the moments of surprising comedy that punctuate this knowing modern fable never allow it to become too bleak.

A complex and darkly humourous fable with plenty of surprises.