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Rental Unit: "Kontroll"

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"Kontroll" is a light and fun mix of comedy and thriller, though it is a little unbalanced. Not all of it is good, either. The comedy, like a lot of Eastern and Northern European comedy, relies heavily on simple slapstick. Guys like Bulcs£'s narcoleptic buddy is on hand for laughs, and director Nimr¢d Antal sprinkles the proceedings with quite a few more one-dimensional characters. Some are dumb; others peevish or cynical.

The mystery element in "Kontroll" doesn't feel underdeveloped as much as underspecified. Some is intended to be frightening and others parts campy. Cleary there are things being groped at here that are never found. And yet the film's naiveté is also a source of some charm. It has a real yearning for independence and style, just like its main man Bulcs£, a likeable if far-fetched guy who has literally gone underground to escape what's going on above. Director Antal has some ideas inside, and after "Kontroll" one hopes he keeps trying to bring them to the surface. — Wayne Melton



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