Zoltán Fábri

Sog.: dal romanzo Esti gyors (1963) di György Rónay. Scen.: Péter Szász. F.: György Illés. M.: Ferencné Szécsényi. Scgf.: József Romvári. Mus.: Szabolcs Fényes. Int.: Antal Páger (Kerekes Kálmán), János Rajz (Sodits), Sándor Kőmíves (Lauffer), Samu Balázs (Dezső), József Szendrő (il giudice Zorkay), Noémi Apor (la donna rossa), Lajos Básti (Holl Péter), János Zách (Szilágyi). Prod.: Mafilm, Studio 1. DCP. Bn.

T. it.: Italian title. T. int.: International title. T. alt.: Alternative title. Sog.: Story. Scen.: Screenplay. F.: Cinematography. M.: Editing. Scgf.: Set Design. Mus.: Music. Int.: Cast. Prod.: Production Company. L.: Length. D.: Running Time. f/s: Frames per second. Bn.: Black e White. Col.: Color. Da: Print source

Film Notes

Utószezon was presented in competition at the 1967 Venice Film Festival, where it won four minor awards and was the subject of heated controversy. With this film, Zoltán Fábri, one of the most important names in Hungarian cinema and its new wave of the 1960s, continued his moral examination of his country’s recent history and particularly the Nazi years, as in his previous movies The Last Goal (1961) and Twenty Hours (1965). Here, however, the tone is not only drama. Péter Szász’s screenplay is intelligently unfaithful to his source, the novel by György Rónay. The film begins with the mood of a wacky comedy, evolves into the grotesque and culminates in a dis- quieting, Kafkaesque drama, reflecting on the Holocaust and the idea of guilt, without ever losing that first imprint, which allows the film to veer suddenly into loose and surreal humour. A group of idle pensioners in a small Hungarian town decides to play a joke on a fellow retiree, making him believe he has been called in by the police for an interview; the friends have no idea that doing so they will trigger a mental crisis, forcing their unlucky victim to deal with secrets of his own past and that of the whole country. After much chasing and adventures, it will be resolved with a homestyle and surreal trial initiated by the band of friends. Fábri freely mixes modernist solutions with allusions to Fellini and playful hints of Jacques Tati and Italian neorealism. The main character Kerekes (played by the well-known actor Antal Páger, who often worked with the director) physically translates De Sica’s Umberto D. into an Hungarian context: he is a man plagued not by the problem of poverty, but by a huge burden on his conscience, which he had removed for years and now suddenly must confront. In the midst of this, there is even room for some references to St. Augustine, Friedrich Dürrenmatt and Hiroshima mon amour.

Federico Gironi

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Restored in 2017 by Nemzeti Filmintézet Magyarország in collaboration with Magyar Operatörök Társasága HSC, with funding provided by Magyar Művészeti Akadémia