Monday Morning

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Movie Review by Alice Castle

Starring: Jacques Bidou, Arrigo Mozzo, Anne Kravz-Tarnavsky, Narda Blanchet

Director: Otar Iosseliani

Georgian director Otar Iosseliani won the International Critics prize and the Silver Bear at Berlin 2002 earlier this year for MONDAY MORNING. It’s a slow moving study of everyday life in what’s commonly know these days as the developed world. Vincent (Jacques Bidou) the main character is not exactly everyman – a welder in a power station his daily routine takes him from home to work in a dream-like state – the only treat breaking the automated monotony, a sneaky cigarette inbetween welding jobs. Outside work Vincent unwinds in his studio, painting watery landscapes and keeping out of the way of his ingenious sons, whose imaginative projects range from building hang-gliders, mending bicycles and painting frescos of St. George on the walls of the local church.

Daily life in Vincent’s family is conducted with little speech – as family members know each other so well they’ve forgotten to bother to ask each other about anything outside their routine. It is only Vincent’s aged mother, living in the granny annexe next to his rambling farmhouse, who seems to keep communication going between the family. Meanwhile her grandchildren carry on with their projects and Vincent’s wife keeps the house in order and puts the food on the table. Routine is broken however, when Vincent decides he has had enough one Monday morning on the way to work and decides he too is going to rediscover his imagination, taking off on a trip to Venice.

Slow moving and with an equally gentle atmosphere, MONDAY MORNING may make you question your 9-5 existence and wonder whatever happened to those childish ambitions you nurtured so long ago….

3 out of 6 stars