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Hmmm... My favourite! Péter Timár's best work. He tried to copy the
several times since then (1985!!!).
The film is a sarcastic but charming point of view about the communist era in the 70's or 80's. The banning of eroticism, the concept of pointless producing at all costs. The manager and the supervising fireman of the box factory lure customers by installing a fire-protection camera system throughout the factory including the women's dressing room. But when the ladies find it out...
The strange camera handling (most of the shots and the movements are filmed backwards, and then reversed, giving the characters a funny behaviour) and the non-realistic conversations and phrases make the film extraordinary and funny. Most of the ideas in the film were contrived during the filming by the whole crew. And let's not forget about the great actors who make this film complete and perfect!
*** This review may contain spoilers ***
One of the weirdest films I've ever seen, so if you like weird, see it!
The Hungarian DVD has English subtitles (that call the movie "Sound
The set-up is the typical male-versus-female bosses-versus-workers arrangement in a small wooden-crate-making factory. Rajhony plays the boss with the yoghurt fetish, while Koltai plays the guy he employs as his fire-safety chief. Koltai suggests installing CCTV, but to spy on the girls rather than to protect them. The firm soon starts selling a lot more crates, as they invite clients in to watch the girls undressing before and after work. Of course, in the end the girls find out and exact revenge.
But the weirdness isn't so much in the silly story as in the way Timar films it. First, it's in black and white. Second, the dialogue is in a stilted, poetic form, somewhat reminiscent of Greek tragedies. Third, much of the movie was filmed backwards. If you know "De Fem Benspænd" you'll recognise these as what film-makers call "obstructions".
The denouement brought to mind a couple of 20th-century classics: Duerrenmatt's "Biedermann und die Brandstifter" and Romanik's "Static".
The acting... Rajhona and Nemeth (the bolshie worker) are excellent, Koltai is, well, Koltai, and Kristof (the boss's secretary) hams it up better than Timar could've dreamed for. All in all, I can't say the film's a "classic", but I enjoyed it.
This movie not just different because of its story, which tells us about a wooden box factory in the 50s of Hungary and the little tricks the leaders do with their power. This movie is different because it is filmed in a very special way (the speed of the movie is varying) and the actors talk in a very surrealistic way, using non-existent, twisted words very similar to real ones, like using an extreme accent. The movie is funny, sometimes a little too much of it, which made me feel that it's overplayed and the situations are exaggerated to infinity. Still, it gives a good touch of the "communist" era of eastern europe. Oh, and don't expect erotic shots. There are almost no naked bodies in the movie. But we all _know_ they are there!
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