Saturday, 18 December 2010

Film Review: KONTROLL (2003)

Co-Writer/Director: Nimród Antal
Running time: 105 mins (approx)
Certification (UK): 15

UK release date: 17th September 2004

Watched on Sky+ Saturday 18th December 2010.


NOTE: Hungarian with subtitles… Turn back now if you can’t deal with subtitles.

I had heard virtually nothing about this film before watching it; I hadn’t even seen a trailer. In this case that was a good thing because what I found was an engaging thriller with a pumping soundtrack and some nice comic moments thrown in on the side. But more of my thoughts later, here’s a brief summary first (summary haters please stand back from the platform edge while the next paragraph passes through the station, thank you…).

The setting is the Metro (or subway) system in Budapest. Here we find a group of ticket inspectors lead by Bulcsú, a rather strange man who seems to be hiding down there from something. We learn pretty quickly that a serial killer is stalking the platforms, throwing his unsuspected victims under the wheels of passing trains. The inspectors are told to be on the lookout for anything suspicious, but they have their own worries. We share in their victories, defeats and the general mayhem that envelops their working lives. As time passes we focus more on Bulcsú and he meets a girl he likes, Szofi, and she has a great influence on him, but I don’t want to say too much about that. The killer is beginning to haunt his dreams and you know that cannot be a good sign.

This is a very well made film with well rounded characters and some great imagery. The soundtrack by Neo is really good and I found it fitted the story perfectly. Good performances all round, particularly from; Sándor Csányi as Bulcsú, Lajos Kovács as Béla and Eszter Balla as Szofi.

If anything I did find it a little claustrophobic with the entire film being set in the Budapest Metro system, but this made for an exciting backdrop to the story. I actually found this one quite enthralling, probably because I found it very easy to engage with the various characters. Over all, a really good black comedy/thriller which, although there is some gore, doesn’t go too over the top. I found it most enjoyable… recommended.

My score: 8.1/10

IMDb Page:

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