The feature film debut Fresh Air wonderfully portrays an impossible mother-daughter relationship against the background of contemporary small-town life in Hungary.
Both the mother (in her forties, no husband) and her teenage daughter are painfully lonesome but would never openly admit it to each other, or to the outside world. The mother, who works as a toilet lady, seeks her way out of loneliness by secretly meeting men she finds from ads. Her life is full of routines and seems lacking perspective of any significant kind. The mother’s routines irritate her daughter, who seems to be ashamed of her mother’s job. The daughter always opens all the windows and doors when her mother comes home. There is no man around until a new admirer of the daughter appears on the scene. The tension between the two women can be felt and cut, but there is also a moment of intimacy when they watch an Italian soap together on TV. It is not only their flat that needs some fresh air.
This psychological drama offers aesthetic camerawork and a lifelike pace, which both enrich the atmosphere. A unique journey to the loneliness of souls in the modern world and a great challenge in mirroring such a unique relationship, this film is touching and funny at the same time. (LC)