Sunday, November 18, 2018

EUFF '18 Film Review - Sunrise in Kimmeria

A touch of foreign excitement entering a small community is a common theme in film from The Gods Must Be Crazy where a discarded Coke bottle falling from above caused chaos to the Dish in rural Australia where the small community there became responsible for a segment of the Apollo 11 landing to here where a Global Map (UFO to the locals) crash lands into a field owned by local handyman Skevos (Athos Antoniou). Skevos is a bit of an underachiever in the community. His distinction is his Swedish mother who came to the community briefly then left long before Skevos could form clear memories. His family owes money to Pambos the Shark (Antonis Katsaris) who owns the local aquarium. Skevos pays down the debt by doing work at the facility. Pambos proposes a deal to reduce the debt greatly if Skevos will pull the UFO out of the knee-deep smelly water pit where it landed. Being not the swiftest or aware of the potential danger to his health or legal consequence by entering the zone and taking the object. Skevos does so putting it in a safe place as he negotiates a better deal with Pambos.

Director Simon Farmakas injects a foreign element into a small sleepy town where the biggest event is the local beauty pageant. The fallout from the GM crash landing in the community includes the arrival of the American retrieval team led by Sam Fuller (Tim Ahern) that wants to protect the confidential data in the device. The U.N. is also on high alert with troops in both the British and Turkish zones at the ready as a reckless cowboy squad of Americans exudes their arrogance as they trample into the theatre.

Athos Antoniou is effective at Skevos. He is proud of his Swedish heritage that makes him unique. He might not be that sophisticated but when setting his mind on a task he is determined and persistent. Kika Georgiou stands out as Maria. Her politician father whats her to leave the small town as in his opinion there is no one worthy for her there. She takes a linking to Skevos despite his outward persona seeing that he is doer willing to take some personal risk. Tim Ahern as Fuller is the anti Ugly American. He has a job to do but is willing to take in the local culture and show the Cypriots a level of respect.

Sunrise in Kimmeria hits all of the tropes and beats one would expect when outside forces descend on a small remote community. Director Farmakas takes his time to show the daily rhythm of the locals especially evident in a discussion about a wall of photos in a local home showing family members going back several generations. The payoff is a series of misunderstandings, cross-purpose conversations and cultural differences that naturally lead to comedic moments and funny interactions playing off the language barrier issue. If your a fan of comedy rooted in different cultures coming together then this film will be one to put on your watch list.

*** Out of 4

Sunrise in Kimmeria | Simon Farmakas | Cyprus | 2018 | 100 Minutes.

Tags: Swedish, GM, UFO, Cyprus, Election, Loan Shark, Debt, U.N. Americans, British, Turks, Buffer Zone, Sunrise.

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