When Father Was Away on Business

Director: Emir Kusturica
Year Released: 1985
Rating: 3.0

Deeply felt depiction of 1950's Yugoslavia and how a slight crack about a cartoon featuring Marx and Stalin lands a father of two in some kind of labor camp. The film can't be confined to this event, however, as the real focus is on the family itself, including the dutiful wife, the two very impressionable sons, the dirty father-in-law, the cruel brother-in-law and so forth. One of the most potent relationships is actually between the one son and his tragic young love for a doomed little girl - their final scene together is affecting, despite the fact that the two characters don't spend that much time together. It can arguably be faulted for not having a clearer focus, but the pieces (vignettes) are impressive in themselves.