Stockholm East is a moving and compelling love story between two strangers, bound together by a tragedy that has taken its toll on both their lives and their relationships.When Johan (... See full summary »
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I had my fears against viewing this title, and I was somewhat puzzled by the obviously surrealistic touch. Generally, I like surrealism in pictures. In this case, it only serves as a weak flavour, as the story is extremely dull and undevelopable. There is something reminiscent of similar French films, but if you compare this one to, say, "Tea in the Harem of Archimede", you realize that "An Eye Red" (impossible title to translate) simply hasn't any plot.
The depiction of the Moroccan father trying to be a travesty of a Swedish person really asks for an explanation, that we, of course, do not get. This is truly a sample of the generic shallowness of protagonists in contemporary Swedish film: you can't sympathize with them, you don't feel anything for them, you're not even curious about their background! The protagonists are Moroccan immigrants in Sweden, and there's a focus on Arab values, traditions and views in contradiction to the mainstream Swedish/Western. However, there are very few immigrants from Morocco in Sweden, as most immigrants are refugees from war-zones, and Morocco is probably one of the most stable and westernized Arab states. (It's not even that typical Arab to begin with, which make this movie rather stupid when it comes to the protagonists relations to other immigrant Arabs: the main character, Halim, speaks frequently with a Middle Eastern woman in Arabic. Now, Moroccans have great difficulty in understanding Middle Eastern Arabic varieties, and the reverse situation is still worse. For instance, the phrase "Shkoon hada?" - featured a number of times in the movie - meaning "Who is this?" would be "Meen huwe/hiye?" in Middle Eastern Arabic. Written Arabic is extremely archaic and, for all practical purposes, yet another idiom.)
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