A female druggie is torn between her boyfriend dealer and a priest offering rehabilitation in "Beyond the Bend," an occasionally interesting but more often annoyingly predictable drama that's more likely to send auds round the bend in frustration at the characters rather than evoke sympathy. Offshore exposure looks extremely limited.

A female druggie is torn between her boyfriend dealer and a priest offering rehabilitation in “Beyond the Bend,” an occasionally interesting but more often annoyingly predictable drama that’s more likely to send auds round the bend in frustration at the characters rather than evoke sympathy. Offshore exposure looks extremely limited.

Best thing in the movie is the strong lead perf by Denissa Der as Szilvi, who’s always in and out of a rehab hospital in Budapest, and either stealing her co-patients’ secret stashes or demanding money from her parents for more drugs. It’s a highly unsympathetic role that isn’t helped by the chaotic script, which sees itself as a study of a conflicted woman — caught between church and state — but too often gets bogged in unclear exposition and unlikable, unredeemable characters. Istvan Bubik makes the priest almost as problematic as Szilvi’s boyfriend (Janos Gyuriska), and pic’s overall look is downbeat and grungy.

Beyond The Bend

Hungary

Production

A Globe Film production. Produced by Pal Egri. Directed by Andras Der. Screenplay, Der, Andras Szeredas, Laszlo Czeto Bernat.

Crew

Camera (color), Sandor Csukas; editor, Agnes Ostoros; music, Benedek Toth; art director, Mara Bozoki. Reviewed at Hungarian Film Week, Budapest, Feb. 5, 2002. Running time: 108 MIN.

With

Istvan Bubik, Denissa Der, Janos Gyuriska, Kata Huszarik, Istvan Hirtling, Gyozo Szabo, Vera Venczel, Imre Csuja, Eva Vari, Tibor Kenderesi.

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