bellareview

Sunshine (1999)

In film, period drama, political, Recommendation, romantic on 01/07/2011 at 6:12 pm

A beautiful chronicle of a Jewish Hungarian family throughout the 20th Century. The family go through different phases of, let’s say, their own identity and each have their struggles with tradition, morals and ideologies along the way. The great-grandfather considers them lucky for escaping the poverty he grew up in because he set up his own successful business, selling a liqueur named Sonnenschein, their family name. The following generation feels less lucky and is confronted with prejudice against Jews, the next generation even more so in WWII, and the following one, in communist Hungary, too. The protagonist of every generation is played by Ralph Fiennes as he morphs from one character’s father into his son.

I’m making it all sound terribly gloomy, but it isn’t a depressing watch. It’s a well balanced, interesting and complex tale full of hope, romance and love, amidst sometimes very harsh bits of reality: racism and war. It’s a three hour film: plan some breaks.

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