Hungary’s film industry is enjoying a welcome boost in the shape of a 3.2 million euro production fund for three new projects.
‘Home Guards’ is one of them. It is the fourth feature film by Krisztina Goda, who studied at the National Film and Television School in London and at UCLA.
The story of two brothers in a small town somewhere in Hungary, is about about what a little power and ideology can do to a person, or to a community as a whole:
“My former movie ‘Chameleon’ was about a man who cheats everyone he meets,” said Krisztina Goda, who also wrote the screenplay. “This movie is more about how an entire community can be manipulated. I find that very interesting and exciting, if offers a lot of dramatic possibilities.”
The story is based on a Hungarian novel by Laszlo Bernat Czetö, which has been compared to Tony Kaye’s 1998 movie ‘American History X’.
Racism and violence by paramilitary groups against the Roma community is a growing problem in Hungary, but Krisztina Goda says her aim was not to shoot a documentary about real events:
“The world in our film is a fictive, imaginary world. Our youth organisation is not meant to echo any existing group, that was not our goal,” she explained.
The movie tells the story of two brothers living a life without perspectives and without any work. They are recruited to join the so-called Home Guards and take a stand against crime. But the movement soon descends into vigilantism.
Actor Viktor Klem, who plays the older brother, said: “You see how we are at the beginning of the film and, at the end, you see what we’ve become: we’ve shaved our heads, like many young men with a passion we have no more limits, we have no more enemies, we do what we want and we don’t care what others think.”
His younger brother is played by Attila Vidnyánszky Jr., a student at the University of Theatre and Film Arts. “In real life I also have a brother, and I am very familiar with this atmosphere, these country boys hanging out on the streets,” he said.
‘Home Guards’, which is being filmed now, is expected to be released next year.