Treasure City: Review

Treasure City: Review

“Treasure City” or “Békeidõ” is a Hungarian film directed and written by Szabolcs Hajdu. Mainly known for his films “Bibliotheque Pascal” and “Fehér Tenyér”, (White Palms in English), which have been nominated in many festivals around the world. White Palms was nominated at the prestigious Cannes Film Festival for the C.I.C.A.E. Award, which aims to support and promote arts cinema.

“Treasure City” will be available in the UK on June 18.

The film invites us into the intimate conversations of several characters, who, as the film progresses, turn out to be more or less related to each other. Through this film, we witness social and relational problems of everyday life.

The main strength of the film lies in the fact that we are going to attend a moment of life of these characters, diving entirely into their problems, their doubts, their fear or their claim. In only an hour and a half, we go through several subjects and several themes such as education, conflicts in a couple, political claims, attempts of abuse and psychological domination, lies and conflict between humans in a more global way. So, most of the time, we witness the darkest sides of the human soul, full of doubts and conflicts and prey to the different social tensions that they undergo every day. 

Szabolcs Hajdu depicts a very dark and hopeless aspect of Hungarian society, similar to Michael Haneke’s work on the Austrian society in his film “The seventh continent” (1989).

But this strength of the film of realism and accuracy would not be one without a good writing from Szabolcs Hadju coupled with an excellent performance of the entire cast (Orsolya Török-Illyés, Szabolcs Hadju, Lilla Sárosdi, Domokos Szabó, Nóra Földeáki, Magdó Pálfi, Lujza Hajdu … to name a few).

The film also benefits from a very neat and well worked photography. We find many night shots in cars, which works very well and make us enjoy the night lights of the city of Cluj-Napoca. This creates a special atmosphere that is very effective.

This film deals with many social issues, in a very aesthetic way and with a very good rhythm between the different stories. But without directing the viewer to a particular direction. It leaves a reflection completely open to the spectator. 

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