Hukkle Review

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Idyllic country lifestyles are juxtaposed with altogether darker events.


Not since the silent days of Alexander Dovzhenko has peasant life seemed both so idyllic and so dangerous. Flourishes reminiscent of the Soviet montage era abound in Gyorgy Palfi's feature debut, as close-ups of whirring machinery and audacious match cuts establish a rhythm of life that's reinforced by barnyard noises on the soundtrack. But beneath the seeming harmony of this enclosed Hungarian community lurks a sinister mystery that results in two funerals and the discovery of a corpse at the bottom of the pond. Palfi occasionally allows his newcomer's enthusiasm to get the better of him (notably the earthquake and X-ray shots). But this is a captivating record of everyday country pursuits and the simmering resentments of an embittered lifetime.

An interesting piece from Hungary with much to enjoy, only slightly dampened by the occasional clunky device.