Dir: Gabor Reisz | Cast: Gáspár Adonyi-Walsh, István Znamenák, András Rusznák, Rebeka Hatházi, Eliza Sodró, Lilla Kizlinger & Krisztina Urbanovits | Hungary, Drama
The tensions of Hungary’s polarised society come unexpectedly to the surface when a student’s exam results become the focus of a national scandal, in this slow burn sophomore feature from Hungarian filmmaker Gabor Reisz (For Some Inexplicable Reason).
In a summery Budapest cramming for his final exams is the last thing on Abel’s mind having fallen for his studious school friend Janka who only has eyes for their happily married history teacher Jacob.
Playing in this year’s Horizons sidebar at Venice Film Festival’s 80th edition Explanation for Everything certainly takes its time in establishing the heady milieu of end of term nerves and fraught family life in the build up to the annual summer holidays. But the thrust here is the flight between tradition and the modern world in a film that contrasts the staunch, nationalistic devotion to duty, expressed by Abel’s conservative father, and Jacob’s liberal-minded take on the future with its woke overtones. Gabor Reisz creates another thematically rich and worthwhile modern classic. MT
VIENNALE INTERNATIONAL FILM FESTIVAL | 19-30 OCTOBER 2023 | HORIZONS | BEST FILM – HORIZONS 2023 VENICE FILM FESTIVAL 2023