7:30 PM, 6th September, 2018
Presented in partnership with the Embassy of Hungary
Opening shot: a stag and doe, snowy mountain setting, peaceful meditative soundscape. Stag sniffs doe, then makes contact. We anthropomorphise. These scenes are played out intermittently throughout the course of the film, where we watch the relationship between new quality inspector Mária (Borbély) and slaughterhouse CFO Endre (Morcsányi) develop from initial work meet-up. Is there a connection, or are these nature scenes merely aesthetic or metaphorical choices?
There is an argument that no movie these days can be entirely original, but On Body and Soul comes damn close. Auteur director Ildikó Enyedi’s aim was “to show an overwhelming, passionate love story in the least passionate and overwhelming way”, and she has managed to do so with this romantic, quirky tale of two broken people finding each other. The acting is spot-on, and the humour laced throughout is eccentric at times and dark in others.
Whilst I do not want to dismiss the important Best Foreign Film Oscar win for (last semester’s) A Fantastic Woman, in my opinion this fellow nominee is a better movie. It’s a deeply resonant story that pushes one to think about making the intimidating leap from your dreams into some form of reality.