Directed by Szabolcs Hajdu
Starring Isaach De Bankolé, Răzvan Vasilescu, Orsolya Török-Illyés, Dragoș Bucur and Tamás Polgár
A mysterious wanderer (Isaach De Bankolé) settles into a strange homestead on the parched Hungarian plains populated by an odd assortment of outcasts, in this stunning, dreamlike reverie from ambitious director Szabolcs Hajdu.
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★★★½ review by Julius Kassendorf on Letterboxd
In the Eastern Bloc, government is going corrupt and roaming groups of criminals are taking over small farms and enslaving people for profit. Into town walks a stranger, a black man, who gets trapped and enslaved by the criminals. That he's a black dude sets him apart from the all white cast, immediately signifying his outsider status.
The western formula is here in tact. It's stripped down to its bare essentials with minimal dialogue and gorgeous framing.
I'm not familiar enough with what's going on in Eastern Bloc to fully get the deeper meaning of everything - why is soccer so prominant?, what was up with the inseminator scene? Are the cops as corrupt as the gangs? - but it was a pleasurable take on the western without getting pretentious or deep about it.
This is what Slow West should have been.
★★★½ review by Nikolai Efimov on Letterboxd
An atmospheric, deliberately paced thriller that's good for its fair share of entertainment, but doesn't leave much of an impression. I liked it, I'm glad I watched it, but I wouldn't really recommend it to anyone. It's a perfectly capable production and Isaach De Bankolé is effortlessly compelling, but in the end it's just more grist for the art house mill, maybe a stepping stone for its director. See it, but only for a good reason.
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