A quasi-thriller with no frills.

Hong Kong Filmart HAS Screenings

Hard luck conspires with bad sex in this unspectacular Austrian tale of crime and punishment. The accidental death of his girlfriend spurs an ex-convict to seek and find revenge in a way he's least expected or ever wanted. The film does not dig into archetypal motives of guilt or atonement, but rather dangles the idea that humans can either be pawns of fate's random machinations or become active agents in a grander scheme of things.

Like the film's first establishing shot of a lake whose smooth surface is suddenly disturbed by something falling in, the plot moves in small ripples, with its first serious turning point arriving 50 minutes into the film and the sexually charged twist occurring 23 minutes later. Cinematography of the countryside is crisp and clear as spring water, focusing on the pristine forest and serene lakes, and capturing the brooding weather that foretells the gathering storm within the protagonists.