The plot couldn't be simpler or its attack on capital punishment (and the act of killing in general) more direct - a senseless, violent, almost botched murder is followed by a cold, ... See full summary »
Lilja is 16 years old. Her only friend is the young boy Volodja. They live in Estonia, fantasizing about a better life. One day, Lilja falls in love with Andrej. He is going to Sweden, and invites Lilja to come along and start a new life.
The plot couldn't be simpler or its attack on capital punishment (and the act of killing in general) more direct - a senseless, violent, almost botched murder is followed by a cold, calculated, flawlessly performed execution (both killings shown in the most graphic detail imaginable), while the murderer's idealistic young defence lawyer ends up as an unwilling accessory to the judicial murder of his client. Written by
Michael Brooke <firstname.lastname@example.org>
The quote mentioned by Piotr during his final examination, "...since Cain the world has neither been intimidated nor ameliorated by punishment ...", is from Karl Marx (explaining why the examiners know the source), published on January 28, 1853. See more »
Simple, yet thought provoking film about capital punishment
A very simple film that should make even the extreme right wing supporters of the death penalty at least question their beliefs.
Personally, I am a supporter of capital punishment, and until the final 15 minutes I was still unfazed by the film and clear in my mind that if used correctly it should be implemented. I know all the arguments about capital punishment not affecting crime rates but to be honest I don't really care about that. It's all about an eye for an eye and allowing relatives a degree of closure knowing that the perpetrator who killed their love one had suffered a similar fate.
However, and this is where this film is clever, the film doesn't allow you to see any real background to the character before committing his crime. It allows you to see only the act and judge the character on the act alone. If the film ended at the murder you would also believe capital punishment is not such a bad idea after all. Once we go past the very short trial (A long drawn out trial was rightly skipped as we already know the fate of our young man), and we get the one on one interview with the aspiring anti death penalty barrister we start to see just how screwed up this kid is, and how the rage in him is not entirely of his own making. Just as you start to question if you knew your mind doubts start to creep in and, just as quickly, before you can really gather any coherent thoughts he is whisked away to his death, and the act is entirely as abhorrent as you imagine it would be.
The nasty high risers and grainy colourless backgrounds set the scene well, and the shaded lenses, focusing on the main character highlighting his loneliness and possibly his narrow mindedness made it a rather sad film to watch, but it certainly is worth sticking with.
An 9/10 is definitely warranted
9 of 11 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?