Adrift on atmosphere and sublime visual beauty, “Delta,” (2008) Kornél Mundruczó’s contemporary Hungarian fable about a brother, a sister and a house goes for the eyes and the gut. (The eyes win.) In a village along the Danube, a shaggy-bearded prodigal son (Félix Lajko)returns to his home village to find his lovely, grown sister (Orsolya Tóth) and mother working in a pub alongside her violent second husband. He’s inspired to build a dock and log house on an island that had belonged to his late father, and his sister joins him in the construction. Quiet moments lead to tragic circumstances: consider the ancient Greeks to have warned the pair. The story moves as implacably as a stream, sometimes maddeningly so. Magyar countryman Béla Tarr is listed as a script consultant in the opening credits; Terrence Malick’s nature-sensitive work needs no credit. Winner of the International Critics Prize at Cannes. With Lajkó , Lili Monori, Sándor Gáspár, Lajos Bertók, Mari Kiss. 92m. (Ray Pride)
“Delta” opens Friday at Facets. A trailer is below.
Ray Pride is Newcity’s film critic and a contributing editor to Filmmaker magazine.
His multimedia history of Chicago “Ghost Signs” will be published soon. Previews of the project are on Twitter and on Instagram as Ghost Signs Chicago. More photography on Instagram.