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Malmö, Sweden during the Second World War. Stig is a 15 year old pupil on the verge of adulthood. Viola is 37 years old and his teacher. He is attracted by her beauty and maturity. She is drawn to him by his youth and innocence, a god-sent relief from her drunk and miserable husband. They start a passionate and forbidden relationship - but it has consequences they never could have expected. Written by
Mattias Pettersson <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Watching "All Things Fair" as it showed on TV here in Canada on CBC public network last night, was a treat. Only my sensible, nagging partner coaxing me to get to bed on a work night persuaded me we could trust the VCR to tape the last hour or so. Fortunately for his neck, the tape ran out during the closing credits and not before!
What I liked most about the film (with English subtitles) was the complexity of Sig's world and his relationships. It's a very real world feeling on screen, full of quirky believability, despite Sig's unusual arrangement with his teacher.
Though I know of a real life story resembling Sig's relationship with his teacher that went very differently for the teacher--ending in her virtual ruin--the behaviour of these film characters, the outcome and the aftermath, rings true nonetheless. No character is one-dimensional, even though the film schools us to sympathize with the choices of some and to repudiate others.
It's delightful to find in the credits that the director gave the plum lead role to his son. It takes an admirable trust, I think, to turn over a role like this to one's own young kin, complete with whatever there is in the script that MIGHT be autobiographical.
The female solo vocals in the soundtrack were wonderful. Now, I just need to found out who was singing like a bell whenever love or pain swelled in the story.
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