Synopsis by Mark Deming
Two people struggle to make the best of a bleak existence in this powerful, deliberately paced drama. An elderly man (Janos Derzsi) shares a cottage with his daughter (Erika Bok) in a sparsely populated village plagued by constant windstorms. While the man tries to scrape together a living using his horse to haul things, the animal is growing old and feeble and refuses to cooperate. Stuck at home, the man performs what chores he can still do now that he's lost the use of one arm, and except for rare passers-by, the man and his daughter have no contact with the outside world and rarely speak, their days punctuated by the same dinner of boiled potatoes every evening. When the well on their property goes dry, the two set out to find a better life elsewhere, but fate offers no respite from a grim march towards mortality. A Torinoi Lo (aka The Turin Horse) was directed by the celebrated Hungarian filmmaker Bela Tarr in collaboration with his editor and spouse Agnes Hranitzky; shortly before the film was released, Tarr announced that this was to be his final project as a director.
cab-driver, farmer, farmer's-daughter, horse, mental-breakdown