Thursday, 9 July 2009

Two Syllables Behind (2005) @ O Dve Slabiky Pozadu

"How do you subtitle cheongsam into Slovak, gramps?"
At a glance:
Offbeat and quaint, this Slovak sleep-o-rama sure is less intriguin than how the title makes it out to be. In O Dve Slabiky Pozadu, this Zuzana Sulajová chick (pic) plays dubbin actress Zuzi (they call it a voice talent these days, don't they) who is young, hedonistic and promiscuous. Fiercely independent, she goes through men as fast as her studio lines because she doesn't really know what she wants. Her Hungarian grandmother Erzsebet has a clue or two, bein the know-it-all she is. Conversations between the two women must be rich – but these are lost in the flashes of lazy subtitlin. You find yourselves driftin in and out of the movie at various points of interest. These would include the bizarre Mandarin-speakin, China-obsessed boyfriend of Zuzi  and the comedy that comes with his character; and the parts where Zuzi is in the studio, sayin her lines with such delightful expertise.
Bad news on the doorstep:
Do you know what are marha, bazmeg, lelkek and cholent? Neither do I. That's why subtitlin is done for movies. However, it befuddles the human mind no end that the English subtitles for this movie come interlaced with so many words that don't get translated. Worse, it makes too many references to its local cultural elements - like TV programmes and traditional dishes that only a Slovak would know. That in turn makes this review either grossly ignorant or plainly descriptive as best.
Reminds me of:
The time I watched this in a private screenin room ALONE at GSC's HQ in Kelana Jaya. What a muppet.
Amacam joker, berapa bintang lu mau kasi?
This movie doesn't travel. How the fuck did it end up with any sort of distribution is a wonder. Goin back to the movie title, it's a play on the heroine's fumblin in the studio and her general discontent in life. She finds herself two syllables behind in her timin despite her concentration – much like how she finds herself always unhappy with things despite the effort she puts in. In the same manner, Two Syllables Behind feels very unrewardin, especially if you are readin too hard for somethin that just isn't there. Worse, one feels that it is there – only in the Slovakian subtleties that frustrate us. Why the fuck did I bother writin this review? 1/2
Bonus material:

o dve slabiky pozadu two steps behind Katarína Sulajová Zuzana Sulajová Slovak movie girls Eastern European call girl art sex naked Russian shaven
Katarína Sulajová & Zuzana SulajováBone Town