Thursday, May 27, 2010


I saw this Greek film in a real cinema. It is about this guy who keeps his grown-up children living in a house with no access to the outside world. He and his wife feed them various nonsensical stories about what the life beyond the garden gate is like, mainly to emphasise that they are not yet ready for life outside the home. Quite why he does this is never really explained, though as the film wears on we get an increased sense of what a nasty and violent thug he is. The situation is not static, however, and the film catches the family as the children are beginning to question their confinement.

One of the things with the film is that it shows people doing things but never really goes in for having them explain why they are doing them. At times it all seems a bit unemotional and clinical, like a Stanley Kubrick directing a Dan Clowes adaptation. Much of what happens in the film is disturbing and creepy, yet it seemed a bit less upsetting than some other well-known creepy films, maybe because of the surrealism of its basic set-up.

I really loved this. It looks great, with the visuals also reminding me of Kubrick, and it has some striking set pieces – the eldest daughter's dance and the family barking like dogs to scare away cats particularly spring to mind. It is also great to see a film be so compelling with so few characters (just the five members of the family, plus a woman from the father's work brought in to… ah, best not spoil the fun).

An inuit panda production

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