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KARLOVY VARY IFF Official Competition

No easy way out

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No easy way out

Spanish title My Quick Way Out (Volando voy) and the German Winter Journey (Winterreisse [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
) were the two last Competition entries from Europe to be presented at this year’s Karlovy Vary Film Festival.

Both look at individuals who are trapped in a difficult situation that will test the strength of their spirits, though the former is about the exploits of a 10-year-old child while the latter portrays a man just a couple of years shy of retirement.

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Already successfully released in its native Spain in January, Miguel Albaladejo’s My Quick Way Out is a look at the life of 10 year-old Juan Carlos (Borja Navas), a boy with a mischievous face and a criminal record to match, with over 150 entries including multiple armed robberies, car thefts and attempted murder.

Shockingly, the film is based on a true story, which is part of the reason it does not fully convince. It wants to be both an action film and a morality tale, but younger children will envy Juan Carlos’ exploits, while parents will probably look on in horror.

The film, which grossed over €1m at home (aided by the notoriety of the real Juan Carlos), was a co-production between MediaPro Group, Sogecine and Estudios Picasso and is being sold internationally by Sogepaq.

In Sebastian Steinbichler's Winter Journey, a d.i.e.film.gmbh production sold internationally by Beta Cinema, Josef Bierbichler plays a cantankerous 60-year-old whose small metalwork company is on the verge of bankrupcy. When he falls victim to an African swindle in a desperate attempt to raise money for his ailing business and wife, he decides to travel to Kenya with his translator (Head-on [+see also:
trailer
film profile
]
’s Sibel Kekilli) to try to get his money back.

Wide-screen cinematography, the use of the titular Lieder-cycle from Schubert and Bierbichler’s performance convince, but the film never fully explains why the businessman would fall for what is so obviously a set-up, while the ultimate pay-off is almost an afterthought.

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