Day in, day out, the same routine is repeated. Immigrant worker Tobias Horvath gets up at 5:00 A.M., washes, shaves, has some breakfast, and runs to the main square. Here, in his Swiss town...
See full summary »
Day in, day out, the same routine is repeated. Immigrant worker Tobias Horvath gets up at 5:00 A.M., washes, shaves, has some breakfast, and runs to the main square. Here, in his Swiss town, he catches a bus to work, closing his eyes but realizing the horror of his existence. For ten years, Tobias has worked in a clock factory and in the relentless sound of ticking, he sees life go by without much expectation. Born in Eastern Europe, Tobias grew up in poverty, the son of a thief, beggar and prostitute. As a young teenager, he finds out who his father is. One night, Tobias knifes his father in the back, and escape to Switzerland. Now ten years later, his hope in life now is to find Line, an ideal woman lost in his imagination. One day, Tobias sees Caroline, a former school pal from the East. His dreams seemingly become shattered as Caroline is married and has a daughter. A series of surprise events further obstructs their relationship, but Tobias perseveres. He has little to lose.Written by
The original version of the movie is spoken in French and Czech. In the version released in Italy, the Czech dialogues are dubbed in Italian, while the French parts are retained. See more »
An enigmatic writer
Everybody who knew Italian director Silvio Soldini for his brilliant Bread and Tulips, with Brucio nel Vento (Burning in the wind) probably will remain disappointed with it. I mean, while the previous was able to "marry" quality actors with a popular, refreshing story, this time the spell was unable to occur for the weight of the story.
In a remote village of eastern Europe, the kid Tobias lives with his young mother, widow and also forced to prostitute herself for money. She does it with the elementary teacher too (and him for compassion, I think), but he was the first to understand Tobias is smart and needs an higher education. One night the child ran away from home (after stabbing her mother in the sleep, believing her dead) and traveling through Europe, year by year, growing and eventually settles down somewhere in Switzerland, becoming a workman with a dignified life: a simple home, friends but not a woman. Every night he writes, writes, pages over pages, addressing his words to a "perfect" woman he idealized. He's a wanna-be writer but nobody seem to notice his talent.
Soldini seems keeping to the rigid rules of sophisticated cinema, ignoring any cheesy approach to the audience. The narrating voice, long stares between the actors and fragmentary dialogs, everything through Tobias' mind. I'm not saying it doesn't worth the time spent, no, but reach the ending it's not easy. Settling the story in Switzerland, speaking about immigration, Soldini perhaps makes a reflection about the "state of the art" of integration (in Europe). Tobias seems bothered by the natives of the city where he lives, and prefers foreigner people to have good time, though everybody treat him with the best cordiality. So, was his little, artist's madness or a voluntary rejection towards western society ? At the end of the movie, in facts, you gathered so much hints, cues besides the solely story that a sensitive watcher cannot pass over. Ivan Franek was convincing and solid. The rest of the cast is quite undefinable, sometimes insipid and lost. Not even a delicate soundtrack, but a raw piece of cinema with open questions on the table.
3 of 9 people found this review helpful.
Was this review helpful to you?
| Report this