Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
Actors: Armand Assante, Norman Austin, Niki Barabás, Lukács Bicskey, Annabel Brooks
Genres: Action & Adventure, Indie & Art House, Drama, Mystery & Suspense
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Cinematic allegory of redemption
Robert Williams | 10/10/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"It is simply incredible that this amazing film has not already been reviewed. The plot is ostensibly that of a cloak-&-dagger adventure set in beutiful central Europe (as a lesson in location scouting it is peerless). At first blush the story is that of Frank Banner (Assante) who runs a covert extraction team which gets blown spies and defectors out of the Soviet Union. The STUNNING opening sequence -- 10 minutes -- is set in Soviet Ukraine, Kiev, about 1989. But after a wonderful main title sequence the action resumes about 10 years later as "Banner" is given the task of whispering his former Soviet nemesis out of democratic Russia to Germany. The two men develop a unique bond; but this is just where the film takes on its allegorical dimension and becomes a study of man's need for redemption. We all want to make the world better, but what do any of us actually do to achieve that? Assante's closing solliloquy, as he meditates over the memoirs which his self-sacrificed package has bequeathed to him, is as thought provoking as anything in Shakespeare's Hamlet. What would the Russian have done with those documents if he had lived? Who did he think Banner would give them to? Why didn't he just do that himself & save a lot of people a lot of work (and his own life)? It doesn't matter. This is an allegory. It is a film about the sacrifices we must make to do the right thing. It is above all a film that states that the right thing IS worth doing.
Assante gives a stellar performance, ably seconded by a largely European cast which includes Jurgen Prochnow & Ornella Muti. This is a treasure for cinemaphiles and fans of the intrigue genre who can debate its real meaning endlessly. It is a symbolic allegory; thus for every viewer it has a slightly different meaning. But we can all agree that the film is a rare treasure.
P.S. This fast paced film is brilliantly photographed, and features a quirky song for which director Anthony Hickox wrote the lyric. Just buy it now while you can get it."