The Trap (Srdjan Golubovic, 2007): Serbia / Germany / Hungary
The trap is an interesting anomaly. It stand on its own to legs. From the outset you have certain expectations just from the title. The movie runs it course slowly reaching for its anti climatic end. The pace is slow so we can get a good feel how the hour drag by as the couple have to sit and wait for the answer from the doctor. They are not allowed to be in the room during critical moments which is standard but hurts anyway as we watch the child’s mother stopped from entering the room.
The child needs a 26,000 Euro heart valve adjustment. The family is distraught over the situation as they don’t have the money for the required operation. Finally they put an add in the paper and a no name gangster hires the father for a hit. He promises enough monat for his son operation and more. The end result is that the father is so tormented by his incapacity to be able to help his son in anyway, that he turns into a rather desperate fellow. This movie is about how things can go awry when the world come crashing in on you. The lead character makes some bad decisions but part of this film allure is that he looks and act like every day man. Just the simply joe with the simple job and a simple life style except for his son illness. He gets so confused he goes from tears to rage.
The scene where he trashes their apartment is well choreographed and no doubt some of it was blocked before hand. But it is not your typical Hollywood trashing, no, this guy does it right. He trashes the whole apartment. His rage is not contained for what seems like five minutes and by then the whole place is completely trashed. And then his son come to stay with him for the night.
It is nearer the end of the film that things start to take on a queer direction. Even so the editing and hence the pacing of the film was slower than the typical Hollywood fare. If the actors or actresses can not carry the scene with their persona then the film would tend to drag a bit. In a way this might be a more realistic kind of film making as compared to the rapid fire montages you get with the Thomas Crown Affair or Die Hard #3 of today.
When the European cinema attacks something from a different angle then it appear to be more interesting. The Avant-guard realism that some of these movies have are just fantastic. But the ones that appeal to me the most are the ones that put unrealistic elements into their film making.
The trap never for a moment pretended to be funny. It was not expected to be funny. But the horrible chain of events it supposes are rather unkind. Coming from a buddhist perspective where everyone is connected this film feel like being placed in a plastic bag from head to toe. Not Good. If I am going to see a film with this kind of plot I want a little more substance. Any plot that moves along so slowly and mundane like looses the audience to boredom. Maybe this is the way to make a film more real than the other more tried and true methods of typical hollywood. But for my dollar I want some more mystic, something that I can say wow look at this it is extra ordinary rather than more to the ordinary side and boring.