Kontroll: Adrienn Szabo
Owen Gleiberman
March 30, 2005 AT 05:00 AM EST

Kontroll

type
Movie
Current Status
In Season
mpaa
R
runtime
106 minutes
Limited Release Date
04/01/05
performer
Sandor Csanyi, Zoltan Mucsi, Sandor Badar, Csaba Pindroch
director
Nimrod Antal
distributor
THINKFilm
author
Jim Adler, Nimrod Antal
genre
ActionAdventure, Foreign Language

We gave it a D

Not since Luc Besson tracked circles around himself in the Paris Métro tunnels of Subway has a director employed an urban catacomb transport system as exhaustively — or exhaustingly — as Nimród Antal does in Kontroll. A subway is a ready-made dystopian movie set, and Antal, shooting in the Budapest underground (the world’s second oldest), can’t get enough of the steel gray fluorescent maze, the ominous slow drop of the escalators. The audience, however, gets more than enough. Antal has assembled what may be the single most colorless group of mangy lowlifes I have ever seen — a pack of inspectors whose job it is to harass the passengers already on trains into showing their tickets. (It’s efficiency like this that killed Eastern European communism.) Their principal activity, though, consists of not liking each other and declaring it with repetitive abrasiveness. The hooded phantom who keeps popping up to shove passengers onto the tracks is the only figure in Kontroll with even a semblance of purpose.

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