MANSFELD

By Andor SZILÁGYI

HUNGARICOM LTD. - as SALES All rights, World / DISTR

Drama - Completed 2006


    • Year of production
    • 2006
    • Genres
    • Drama
    • Countries
    • HUNGARY
    • Languages
    • HUNGARIAN
    • Duration
    • 117 mn
    • Director(s)
    • Andor SZILÁGYI
    • Writer(s)
    • Andor SZILÁGYI
    • Producer(s)
    • Jenő HABERMANN
    • Synopsis
    • The first third of the film shows the life of four-five boys in the late fifties in Budapest. Péter Mansfeld and his friends are half adults, half adolescents. The most significant experience of their life is linked to the 1956 Hungarian Revolution. ”Infected” by the revolutionary and patriotic spirit, they are daydreaming of the upheaval’s revival and continuation even two years after the revolution’s defeat. They collect weapons in the Buda Hills, patch up handbills, and by a romantic gesture, they swear to be the 1956 heroes’ worthy followers. In order to prove this, they free Péter’s brother-in-law from the prison. The boys revolutionary daydreaming mingles with adolescent pranks, childish tricks, and minor criminal acts, like peeping into the bathroom of the nurse quarter, stealing the car of an officer, or breaking into the store-room of a food store – all attempts, doomed to fail, to revive revolutionary romanticism. In this scope fits the assassination of a policeman too, which is the capital crime they will later be accused of. The series of actions planned and carried out like adults do gets to a childishly charming end: the boys immediately let their victim go when they learn that the man has a family and little children. They are however, by far not treated with kid gloves in those times. Their stealing a car in the film’s first scenes turns out to be a fatal crime because without knowing it, they interrupt the love affair of a high-rank officer of the Ministry of the Interior. One of them, Péter Mansfeld pays with his life for it.
      The film’s following parts tell the story of the mother fighting for the freedom, and later the life of her son. Using any possible connection of hers, Mrs. Mansfeld does everything in her capacity to achieve her goal, but she hasn’t got any chance against the faceless establishment of the time. Fear laming everyone, is the one and only power to reign in Budapest of the early consolidation period of the Kádár era. Everybody is afraid: the victims, the informants, and also the unprincipled collaborators. The losers are afraid, but what is perhaps even worse, the winners too. In this secluded world of no solidarity, Mrs. Mansfeld is running about, knocking on doors, ever more desperately trying to find connections to the "higher circles” in order to save her son’s life, but nobody listens to – and she is left to herself for good.
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