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Czech Republic 2003
Directed by Ondrej Trojan
Running time 150 minutes

Reviewed by
Sharon Hurst
3.5 stars

It's good to see there can still be a slightly new take on a World War II film. Whereas many films in this genre concentrate on the war itself, Zelary is more a study of a woman, displaced from her natural element and forced to do whatever it takes to survive. It tells of love that can grow under most improbable circumstances, and how relationships between strange bedfellows can be highly and unexpectedly rewarding. It is also the tale of two worlds colliding: mountain people, living isolated lives in which a mix of drunkenness, wife abuse, hard work, and herbal healing are central, and who, despite prejudice and suspicion, take a stranger into their midst. SH

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