A faulty car alarm brings neighbors together while emphasizing their isolation in "False Alarm," an accomplished feature by helmer Katerina Evangelakou that fits snugly into the subgenre of dramas set in an apartment block. Commercial prospects at home look strong, though much offshore play is unlikely.

A faulty car alarm brings neighbors together while emphasizing their isolation in “False Alarm,” an accomplished feature by helmer Katerina Evangelakou that fits snugly into the subgenre of dramas set in an apartment block. Nicely woven storylines may not be original but rarely sag, thanks in part to ideas that spread identification across a broad surface. Commercial prospects at home look strong, though much offshore play is unlikely.

Residents of a building in Athens are slowly driven mad by a car alarm that blares intermittently through the day and night. As evening falls, Andreas (Errikos Litsis) loudly tries to woo back wife Eleni (Angeliki Papathemeli); actor Fanis (Hristos Stergioglou) longs to rekindle his secret gay relationship with Marios (Dimitris Xanthopoulos); and sisters Loukia (Loukia Mihalopoulou) and Niki (Vaso Kavalieratou) bicker through their insecurities. Next door, Irene (Irini Moraki) is robbed by amoral Nicholas (Anastasis Kolovos) and thick Dinos (Makis Papadimitriou). Behind all the shutters, no one is happy and few are true to themselves — small-screen sentiments that also work on the bigscreen. Evangelakou overlights most scenes.

False Alarm

Greece

Production

A Rosebud release of a Greek Film Center, Hellenic Broadcasting Corp., Katerina Evangelakou, Nova, GP Lighting, Graal production. (International sales: Bad Movies/Greek Film Center, Athens.) Produced by Constantine Moriatis. Directed by Katerina Evangelakou. Screenplay, Nicos Panayotopoulos, Evangelakou.

Crew

Camera (color), Yorgos Argyroiliopoulos; editor, Yanna Spiliopoulou; music, Dimitra Galani; production-costume designer, Yulia Stavridou. Reviewed at Thessaloniki Film Festival (Greek Films), Nov. 24, 2006. Running time: 91 MIN.

With

Yvoni Maltezou, Hristos Stergioglou, Taxiarxis Hanos, Errikos Litsis, Alexia Kaltsiki, Angeliki Papathemeli, Dimitris Xanthopoulos, Makis Papadimitriou, Anastasis Kolovos, Vaso Kavalieratou, Loukia Mihalopoulou, Omiros Poulakis, Yorgos Velentzas, Yorgos Souxes, Dimitris Liolios, Irini Moraki.
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