Directed by Vladimír Balko, Drama
Age: 15 +, 97 min, English subtitles
Tono, a man in his forties, is released from prison and tries to resume his life as an ordinary citizen. Now estranged from his wife, he doesn’t even know his five-year-old son and he can’t get work, since everyone regards ex-convicts with suspicion. Confronted by his former friend and “best mate” Štefan, unconventional Tono is forced to resolve a precarious drama unfolding within him, however, he comes out of it with his honour intact. The excellent script by Jiří Křižan, Martin Štrba’s refined camerawork and meticulous direction from Vladimír Balko together create a compelling tragedy about crime and its consequences, the desire to start afresh in spite of spectres from the past, about faith in good things and inclinations towards evil. The film has various parallels with Sekal Has to Die, also written by Křižan – again a provincial drama about conflicts within a central character intransigent in his attitudes, in a tale which pits good against evil. Soul at Peace also gives an authentic portrayal of the rural environment of central Slovakia, the local Romany community and the attitude of the villagers towards “black sheep” Tono. The film defies the general trend to ensure entertainment value and offers a thought-provoking and powerful visual story.
Film is being screened on the occasion of the Slovak Presidency of the Council of the European Union in cooperation with the Embassy of Slovakia in London and the Slovak Film Institute.