31 December 2006 | Jesus Quintana
Amazing debut of a real talent
"Een Ander Zijn Geluk" (a.k.a. "Someone Else's Happiness") has received an enormous amount of acclaim at several prestigious international film festivals, but failed to make a big impression on critics and audiences in Belgium, its country of origin. That is particularly unfortunate since this excellent film marks the discovery of a truly gifted new filmmaker, a young woman named Fien Troch. In terrific cinemascope compositions, she paints a portrait of what happens in a small town community when a child is killed in a hit-and-run accident. This is a film filled with silences, but it manages to convey a heartwrenching sense of human sadness regardless of its lack of emotional outbursts or big dramatic moments. The ensemble cast shines in doing the most with a minimum of dialogue and really turns this bleak and potentially overly distant tale into a gripping illustration of human loneliness, isolation and inability to communicate. When David Eugene Edwards' beautifully tormented end credits song kicks in, you know you've seen something special. "Een Ander Zijn Geluk" reminded me of Atom Egoyan's and Alejandro Gonzalez Iñarritu's best work, and since it is Belgium's entry for the 2007 Academy Awards I wish it the best of luck - it deserves the highest praise.