Hungarian inspirations

Hungarian inspirations

We finally entered our festival month and the whole team of the Behind the curtain festival is very excited for the upcoming events!

However, as we are all waiting for the Big Festival Opening event, we decided to ask our hungarian colleague to tell us about one of his favorite hungarian films. We believe it is an interesting perspective to see different people point of view on their native cinematography, and although this movie didn’t end up in this year selection, we decided it’s worth to check it out anyway!

So we gonna leave you here, with review prepared by Szabolcs. enjoy

Kontroll.

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             Kontroll

              Year: 2003

              Country: Hungary

              Director: Nimrod Antal

 

 

First of all I would like to point out I am not a film critic or in any way had studied the art of making a film. This is just a personal view of this film made in Hungary in 2003, directed by Nimrod Antal. Hope you will enjoy my review and you will watch this movie as well.
The movie itself is fiction, based in a make-believe underground metro system, about the main hero Bulcsu and his gang of ticket inspectors. And that’s pretty much what the story is about if someone would ask me what it is. You would have to watch the movie to understand what it really is, can`t explain how complex and detailed the films is, and how much people can relate to the characters even if they are just make believe. I am sure we have all our group of people we work/hang-out with, the one who has seen it all and tired of life, one being the new comer, the goofball, the lone wolf, and the creep of the group. I am going to focus on the lone wolf of character, even though all of them are fully flushed out and detailed the way it was meant to be, I am writing about him because he’s the person I can relate to the most, but all the characters have enough screen time to be fully recognized, from the goofball constantly falling asleep due to his illness, to the new guy constantly screwing up, all of the actors play their parts brilliantly, especially when they have to work individually as ticket inspectors, having separate scenes.

The story of the lone wolf is a mystery in its sense; we just know that he is the leader of the group and that he is unbeatable in the game (sinezes), which is a chicken run from one metro stop to the next while there is a metro in front them and another running behind them a couple of minutes away. Who has ever been underground know that the tunnels metros go through have no lights and full of wires and other hazards that makes this a difficult run, and this person has done it several times. And he gets challenged by his so-called rival and his posse. Not going to spoil it. Also this rival of the main character kind of looks like him, only a clean shaven well dressed version of him.
Side characters worth mentioning are:
A shadowy person hanging out in the underground that seems to go unnoticed, and starts to murder people by pushing them in front of running carriages. His face is hidden by his hoodie as he lurks in the shadows waiting for his next victim to pop up.
A girl constantly popping up in a bear costume, which seems out of place… and to be honest first time I have watched it didn’t make sense. (In the end it will)
The 3rd character who comes in and out of scenes is the guy who is simply dubbed the roadrunner, who keeps running away because he travels without a ticket.

Last but not least the wise old guy (because there is no story without a wise old man) who is a metro driver, giving advice to our main hero, telling stories of his youth.

There are many others but if I would list them all, this review would be more than a couple of 100 words. I am not going to spoil anymore of the movie watch it and see how you feel about it, from now on here I am going to write my own interpretation about this movie, with occasional spoilers, so if you haven’t watched it, it might ruin the movie for you.

 

This movie symbolizes the constant battle inside our main hero. His story is about how he is persistently stuck underground never going home is a metaphor for something he thought he was meant to do but never had the courage to do it. Instead he got stuck in a dead end (in this case the underground) never to be able to leave, or so he thinks that way. He stayed in darkness for so long that he created an alter ego (the hooded murderer) slowly destroying everything he has left (the passengers), representing destruction and all of his fears.  It all changes after he meets his brother on one of the rides, who asks about his well-being and tries to talk some sense into him, that he is capable of more. (I am sure everyone can relate to these encouragement talks) From then on it seems that our hero is having second thoughts, and even a conversation with the wise old driver, after that movie kind of dreams of to heavy visuals and beautiful shots of the underground with our main hero searching. And that’s when the girl in the bear costume starts to make reality come true; she is the one representing strength of   the protagonist to walk out of the darkness (or she can be a wakeup call which we have all come across in our lives and it usually leaves an impact on us, and it is usually comes in the strangest of ways, in this case a girl in a bear costume). After she gets saved from another group of inspectors she invites him to walk up with her for a drink which he kindly refuses and instead asks her to join him for a coffee automat in the subway. From this we get one of the strongest moments in the movie when he meets the roadrunner (the guy who cannot be captured). I am not going to spell out what he represents. After a really cool chase seen it seems like he runs away yet again only to be pushed and killed by our faceless murderer, who then looks Bulcsu straight in the eye and starts walking towards and then passed him, while Bulcsu is scared stiff, with his eyes shut. This scene itself can tell a whole story of its own, how being good can be really hard, and facing your fears is not the easiest thing in the world. But it has to be done eventually. Not going to talk about the ending because that would ruin the whole of the movies experience, you have to watch it to see the outcome, but it is tense and well worth watching.

Everyone has to face its fears and gain full control of their lives; otherwise they will be left wondering in the darkness. This is what this movie is really about, for me at least. This movie is about facing and concurring your fears, becoming a better person, controlling (kontroll) your own life. This movie has helped me through a difficult time in my life where I had to make a choice and I am still glad to this day that I had the courage to stand and face my own demons when I had to and will carry on doing so.

All in all it is a movie with great actors, stunning visuals, great story, and overall a must watch for all who like the deeper meaning of films. Hope my review has of help and you will check this movie out. Unfortunately it is only available in Hungarian but you can easily get the subtitled version.

Thank you for reading my first movie review.

Szabolcs Bodi

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