A murder mystery set in Budapest 1936, just as Hungary was preparing to allign itself with Hitler. A young beautiful girl is found dead and noone wants to investigate - except Gordon a ...
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A murder mystery set in Budapest 1936, just as Hungary was preparing to allign itself with Hitler. A young beautiful girl is found dead and noone wants to investigate - except Gordon a crimd reporter who has a gut feeling that things are not what they seem.
There is a (beautiful ) Coffee machine, ELEKTRA Micro Casa Semiautomatica which is an espresso machine using pressure (pump) to brew coffee. The movie is set in 1936, but it's only in 1938 that Achille Gaggia started to brew espresso coffee by means of pressure through a piston system (later by mean of a pump) See more »
an authentic Hungarian film noir with a kosher twist
BUDAPEST NOIR BY ALEX image1.jpeg
BUDAPEST NOIR is a murder mystery set in the German influenced Budapest of 1936 with Antisemitism on the rise. Superbly directed, acted, and beautifully lensed by master cinematographer Elemér Ragály. This is by far the Best Hungarian film of the year in what has been a very good year for Magyar cinema generally. In terms of genre the very first film of its kind from this country and an eye opener of the first order.
Zsigmond Gordon (Krisztián Kolovratnik) is a tough scruffy unflappable investigative reporter for the biggest newspaper in Budapest in Horthy's increasingly fascist dominated Hungary. He specializes in murder stories but when a nameless hooker he met the night before is found dead on Nagydiófautca ("Big Walnut Street", the heart of the whorehouse district) and he starts following up on this "fait divers" which nobody else cares about or wants to know about he finds he is on to something far bigger than he bargained for. The mystery moves into high gear when the corpus dilecti disappears from the morgue. The coroner blithely consumes his fresh lunch amidst the freshly dead bodies as Gordon plies him with questions. Meanwhile his ex-girlfriend, Krisztina (who once gave him a very hard time, returns from Germany and plunks herself down in his apartment. Gordon has reservations about resuming the relationship but she's a very good photographer and good pictures are just what he needs to back up his investigation. Dialogue: He: (Cynically) "What happened. Didja give another guy a hard time in Berlin?" She: (Dryly) "Yeah. His name was Adolph and he had a little mustache under his nose".
We soon gather that Krisztina's pictures showing the harassing of Jews got her into political hot water and she had to scram fast. However, she has received offers from Britain ... For the time being, since she is down and out, she is willing to work with Gordon to pay her way. The old flames are rekindled with a flourish of passion in a red dark room as critical pictures are developing and a rousing love scene ensues in the midst of all the noir anxiety and suspense. They are now a couple fighting crime together, but there is always an "if" in the air, because this is after all a film noir... with many surprising Jewish twists and turns (a Jewish ladies prayer book turns out to be a significant clue).
This remarkable movie has the feeling of a Dashiel Hammet or Mickey Spillane thriller time-warped to the mid thirties in central Europe. Kolovratnik is outstanding as the tenacious reporter. So scruffy and noir to the core that he seems to be mouthing pure wisecrack English and could pass for Mike Hammer or Sam Spade if he were a gumshoe instead of a journalist. -- Inspired casting. This hitherto little known actor was born for the role. He won't be little known for long.
All other roles are just as sharply etched, notably "Moochy" Zoltan as a restrained informer minus his customary buzzmeg vocabulary, and Kata Dobó as the flaming red-haired madame of an upscale brothel named "Les Fleurs du Mal". A fancy nightclub called The Ring features female boxers in a real ring as the Floor show. The owner is a wealthy coffee importer with high level connections in Berlin. Here the plot begins to thicken. Set pieces such as the frame-up of the hero are so smoothly handled they more or less ooze from the script. Period decor and reconstruction is letter perfect while those familiar with Budapest will recognize many locations even if slightly modified.
The ending is a pure noir shocker which cannot be revealed here. Shrewd savvy direction by Éva Gárdos, a Hollywood industry veteran who directed the Hungarian American film "An American Rhapsody" with Nastassia Kinski and Scarlett Johansson in 2001, is impeccable. One wonders where she has been hiding all this time. Bottom Line: A perfect Hungarian film noir with kosher overtones but it took a Hungarian expatriate to make it! Splendid job. Ten stars are not enough.
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