Exterior – barren landscape – Night . The continuous hum of insects. A distant figure walking across the horizon. The clomp of a woman’s heels... The Reaper grabs you from this first shot and never lets you go. Set in rural Slovenia, we follow Mirjana as she attempts to find someone who can help her with her broken down car. She stumbles across Ivo, a farm labourer who mysteriously works nights. He drives Mirjana to a petrol station. The conversation is awkward. The tension rises when the station attendant, Josip, informs Mirjana that Ivo went to prison twenty years ago for raping a woman. What follows is a contemplative multi-narrative study of isolation which asks whether your past defines your present and, more interestingly, whether it should. A bleak portrait of one individual manifests itself throughout the film as we witness a whole community that is ravaged by loneliness. A tragic stillness permeates every scene: Mirjana’s glances convey a fountain of unspoken truths, judgements and possibly compassion, and Julij Zornik’s haunting sounds – the squeak of machinery, the fumbling of keys, a dripping tap – punctuate the stellar performances. Juric orchestrates a chilling ambience that will haunt your mind long after the final credits.
Ankica Juric Tilic