Set right around the beginning of WWII, this film focuses on a little restaurant in Hungary. It's owned by a savvy Jewish businessman, Laszlo, who has great chefs, but the main draw is his powerfully charismatic waitress, Ilona. Everyone in the restaurant is in love with her, including a blond German regular, Hans. And when they hire a new piano player, Andras, he too falls for her. The problem with Andras, however, is that Ilona falls for him as well. Faced with the idea of losing her, Laszlo decides he's willing to share her. And so they continue, fairly happily. Until the war comes to their country and things start getting scary.
This is a wonderful film. The relationships between the main characters are deep and real. The fear and shock of the holocaust are felt keenly. And all the acting is great, the music is great, and the story is very well done. My friend John Paul keeps saying how much better this film was than the Pianist in dealing with the same subject. I loved the Pianist, too, and wouldn't say this is better, but certainly just as good.Posted by Alyssa at February 27, 2004 08:52 PM