The Angelmakers

  • Hungary, Netherlands, UK
  • 33
  • STC

It’s been said, don’t come here. Because here, if the husband doesn’t behave, he will be killed. To one inhabitant of Nagyrev, a sleepy village in rural Hungary, that’s how the story goes. In quiet observation, the gossip is spun into a vivid recollection of a tainted past when at least 140 men died of arsenic poisoning. As oppressed wives forbidden to divorce their in-the-way husbands, murder was not so much an uprising as it was an escape. And so a midwife was called, and a pantry turned laboratory provided a lethal solution in a strip of flypaper. With poetic memory and black humour, the villagers recount the foggy details of murder over the calm of the countryside. Anecdotes of their historic, domestic battle mingle with quirky portraits of a daily village life that, although claims freedom for both sexes, still wears the dark, devious past to dinner. Melanie Sevcenko.

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