30 May 2010 | ThurstonHunger
Putting the Gory in the Allegory, or Vices Versa Vices
Fascination and revulsion with bodies in this unique film. The fact that it's labeled as "Comedy|Drama|Horror" on the categorizations is not someone being cute, it's as fair assessment as one can come up. I was drawn to the director for his vision in an earlier film about a hiccough.
Whereas "Hukkle" worked on a small story, in a small section of time, in a small village mostly with non-actors, here directory Palfi produces an epic film spanning three generations, and with plenty of CGI and other gadgetry. Evidently the work is drawn from a series of Hungarian short stories, and check out this board comment from "bodaa" http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0410730/board/nest/155009133 The film feels like it has that sort of depth, I did latch on to the 3/7 of the deadly sins. And for me, the whole notion of the sickly significance of our bodies, especially in this era of telepresence and virtual reality teases, that alone is pretty, um, heavy. The grotesque characterizations are done with such precision and care, this could have easily been a sloppy art-house film, lampooning the exaggerated depictions of the three men.
But Palfri's devotion to details midst the dementia, like the love affair in the middle of the eating champions. That scene in the paddle boat, it's just done with such care, and for a brief moment floats a postcard joy into story. I just was constantly drawn to this film despite any of the number of the repulsive scenes. In stories, an author can get away with much more, something may be mentioned and we, the readers, may comprehend, but a film maker is doomed or, in Palfi's case, challenged to show us what we may not want to see.
In that, Palfi is unique, and again this is a unique film that I hope you seek out. Even if the Hungarian history remains hidden to one, the film stands out.