|Richard J.Brzostek - 05/01/2007
A film about the relationship between an older woman and her, April 1, 2006
"Departure" (Odjadz) is movie about the relationship between an older woman and her mother who both live in an old age home. Both of the women have German roots and live in Poland, so the other people who live in the home are not so fond of them. As the women recall their past, we get to see their lives during World War II.
I liked how the film shows more than one side of the story. One the one hand, the two German women experience prejudice in the present time by the Poles; and on the other hand we get to see how Germans, but not necessarily these two women, expressed prejudice to the Poles in the past. In a sense, we get to see what made both sides bitter to each other.
I have to give the film credit for presenting the past in an interesting way. First, it is not all done at once, but mixed with present time. Therefore, we only slowly figure out what happened. Second, the flashbacks are not purely their memories, as we get to see what happens before and after their direct experiences. In this sense, we get to experience many points of view, and not just their own.
Overall, I did find "Departure" sad. After all, reminisces of a lost love, a child who died, and younger years are not things to put one in a chipper mood. Because the story is also about a mother who controls her daughter on a subtle level, it added to the unhappiness. We can all probably think of an example of a parent who uses their child and does not let them grow up, and how this really is a sad situation.
"Departure" is a reflective drama that just may get you to reminisce a little on your own life. As the film is about a mother and daughter, it may appeal most to women.
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