What’s up! I’m Marlon, and this is Ulven Reviews: movies and series from all over the world.
Today let’s talk about the 2021 Polish Comedy-Thriller In for a Murder, starring Anna Smołowik and directed by Piotr Mularuk.
Magda (played by Anna Smołowik) finds the body of a woman (played by Sandra Herbich) near her home. Since she’s an avid Agatha Christie reader, she tries to help Commissioner Jacek (played by Paweł Domagała) solve the crime.
Well, today is International Women’s Day, so for most of the month, we’ll be reviewing movies that have something to do with women.
Last week we uploaded a YouTube Short video review of Black Widow, which has three women in the core cast and is also directed by a woman.
Today’s film has a female protagonist and deals with violence against women, including femicide. We’ll talk about all that in the review.
So, without further ado, let’s get to business.
I liked the movie, but I have to admit it has some problems. Let’s tackle it by parts, as usual.
Firstly, the plot. It’s a generic conspiratory murder mystery without any new element or unique twist. Once the case is solved, everything is clear and straightforward, especially after the very expository admission from the killer.
I have to address this scene, but I’ll do it without spoiling the movie. Character X and Z are talking about the crimes, and X just starts confessing everything out of nowhere. After the confession, Z says: “I knew it, I never bought that original story”.
This scene could be fixed to make much more sense by only inverting the order of the lines. So, the two would be talking about the crimes, and Z would provoke the confession by saying he-or-she never believed the original story.
I never even tried to write a screenplay or anything like that, it’s just logic.
Also, I think the timeline was a little confusing regarding the disappearance of Weronika (played by Emma Giegżno), Magda’s best friend as a teenager. But in the end, it doesn’t really matter because it didn’t affect the end result.
The ending of the movie was satisfactory. There were no loose ends, nothing idiotic or annoying in the main conclusion. The side plot regarding Magda’s personal life were left slightly open in a way, but it was probably an option, not a mistake.
However, nothing I talked about so far gives away that it’s a comedy. So I have to tell you now, it’s funny as f__k and really entertaining. There are instances of very evident humor, but also some subtle jokes.
The whole film has this fun and light mood despite the themes around murder and power.
Talking about murder, one of them is the typical femicide, in which a woman is murdered, usually by a man, basically for being a woman. For example, some guy hits on a woman, is rejected, and decides to kill her. Or a partner doesn’t accept the end of the relationship and kills the woman.
Femicide is the maximum expression of violence against women, but it’s not the only one. Let’s talk a little about Poland, the country of origin of In for a Murder. According to a Notes from Poland article, Over 60% of women in Poland have experienced domestic violence.
Despite that, the government of far-right scum, Andrzej Duda have the intention of removing Poland from the Istanbul Convention, that
requires governments to adopt legislation prosecuting domestic violence and other forms of abuse against women.
To replace the said Convention, the Polish parliament proposed a reactionary treaty that would f__k women’s rights.
They always come with this idiotic rhetoric about “family”, but it’s all bulls__t and everyone knows it. About this. I recommend Engels’ “The Origin of the Family, Private Property and the State”. I’ll leave the topic at that.
Now, to the topic of domestic violence related to the movie, I feel like Magda is a victim of it. She might not take a beating or hear screams, but lots of other microaggressions, and she’s coerced not to work, which I think is a part of patrimonial violence.
That’s one of the things that made me love Magda’s character. Not because I have a thing for victims of violence, but because she begins in this situation and evolves a lot throughout the movie.
I love how she’s always dressed in bright colors that would mirror her personality, but often, her happy traits are not even visible because her f__king husband drains her.
Tomasz (played by Przemyslaw Stippa) is the husband, and he’s probably the most insufferable c__t in the movie. No one likes him.
Surprisingly enough, he is not even the only absurdly awful person in the film. All the rich people are nasty, to different degrees, just like in real life.
Jacek is the supporting character with the most prominence, I liked him a lot. He’s really funny, and his constant runs with Magda are a high point of the movie.
There are two characters with unfulfilled potential. The vet, Walczak (played by Jacek Knap) and Magda’s best friend, Elka (played by Olga Sarzynska). Walczak could be a more imposing presence to pressure the awful husband, while Elka is really funny but is barely on screen.
The acting is all good. It’s nothing of that over-the-top, I-want-an-Oscar performance, drooling while fighting a bear or being jealous with cerebral palsy. It is very efficient to the humor, it was good enough for me.
The appearance of the movie is decent. It’s not breathtaking or awe-causing. It’s much more concise and conveyed to me a comfy feeling. Every single location of the film seems comfortable, even the mansion of the rich c___s.
I love the outdoors, full of nature, with a sense of close community. While the indoors are very interesting and rustic, especially Elka’s house. I f__king love that place, even the shape of that house is compelling.
I said in The Manor review that I would not talk about generic scores, then, the following review was a movie with an absolutely classic score by legendary composers.
Now we’re back to real life, a modern movie, and I actually have something to say about this score. It’s very resemblant of the golden age of Film noir, so it’s quite nice, but of course, it would be better with a noir mood as well.
There’s one major negative point in the score. I hate with all my heart when the motherf__kers decide it’s a good idea to throw the Kung-fu Fighting song in a shit attempt at humor. It has the opposite effect on me.
In for a Murder has some frailties in the plot and other areas. However, there are as many qualities to balance things out. The little cosmetic details are the tiebreaker for me. I’ll give In for a Murder 6 Moons!
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Thanks for watching see you in the next video.