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Vakvagany (2002)

6.3
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Ratings: 6.3/10 from 47 users  
Reviews: 10 user | 2 critic

A strange film employing old home movies and newly shot footage in an effort to expose one Hungarian family and their mutiple problems from the 1940s to current. Narrated by James Ellroy, ... See full summary »

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Title: Vakvagany (2002)

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Cast

Cast overview:
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Himself
Stan Brakhage ...
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Roy Menninger ...
Himself (as Dr. Roy Menninger)
Erno Locsei ...
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Atuska Locsei ...
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A strange film employing old home movies and newly shot footage in an effort to expose one Hungarian family and their mutiple problems from the 1940s to current. Narrated by James Ellroy, Stan Brakhage, and Dr. Roy Menninger. Written by Anonymous

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Unrated
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31 May 2002 (USA)  »

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$20,000 (estimated)
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User Reviews

There but for the grace of God
30 September 2003 | by (United States) – See all my reviews

This is a fantastic piece of filmmaking. Benjamin Meade has taken something as mundane as the home movie and created a stunning work. What is fascinating is that there is so much in this quasi- documentary that is shown. We follow a family, but like all families they have their history and live in a world that has history. They are their own world, and part of the world around them.

The narration- comments that occur durring the film remind us of that. The family has their life, but part of that life is in the world in which they live.

Then, we seek the family today. We wonder what happened to that family that we watched and became interested. This is where we literally jump into the screen. The director meets the son depicted in the home movies. We see what has happened to the son, raising questions about the rest of the family. We seek the daughter. This is where the director Meade shows what kind of film this is. Instead of being a dispassioned reporter, he has involved himself in this family. When there are questions about the wellbeing of the sister, the director involves himself, and the audience via the camera, in finding the answer.

Does he take things too far? That is what each of us have to answer of ourselves. I guess it all depends on whether you can be compassionate with a camera in your hands. But, the audience should be greatful that they were taken on the journey.

It also raises another interesting question. While much of the film takes place in Hungary, there is nothing that says that it could not happen in New York, or California, or Kansas. What do our home movies tell about us. What have we done since we were children? Are there hints in anyone's childhood that says where they are going?

See the film, make your own judgements.


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