New Age Coming?
by Gyözö Mátyás
And there is another kind of symbolic representation connected to this scene, because we can observe the structure and cooperation of the eastern gang under the Russian (!) boss, who in fact keeps his fellow men under strict control and deprives them partly of their freedom by taking away their documents. So he uses and abuses others, deluding them at the same time with a false pledge of protection and giving them the illusion that they belong to a community: a model of an authoritative, byzantine power, as opposed to the democratic western model.
After this important sequence, the credibility of the representation fails a little because of the dramatic cross-connection to the next part of the film. Marek, the young Ukrainian, goes back to Daniel to offer his service for the previously agreed 50 euros. For me, the film can not really make it believable that after such a traumatic clash with the gang, the moderate and reserved Daniel would ever want to meet Marek again.
But probably that was the only way to make the movie progress further and describe the changing relationship between the immigrant prostitute and the lonely gay petit bourgeois. In the beginning, it is a business-like transaction conducted with callosity and insensibility on Marek’s part. But the ice in relationship meltsafter a while and soon it becomes rather a familial bond.
As a new twist, the possibility of escape from the gang arises for Marek.
But here, with a smart dramatic parallelism, the director shows ushow the police — as representative of power — now intrude into the immigrants’ home. The scene is actually much more brutal and hysterical than the preceding one when the immigrants invaded Daniel’s home, but the structure of the two episodes is the same. It becomes clear that the police just do their duty, they try the keep order and necessarily try to avert effects that menace normal life of society.
So it turns out that only a lucky individual can perhaps be given the opportunity to be integrated into society. The group is doomed to disband and its members are supposedly deported.
Eastern Boys is a disturbing and thrilling film about gruesome and startling problems of contemporary European community.
Edited by Birgit Beumers
© FIPRESCI 2014