Filip, a sophisticated professor goes on vacation with this wife. Their idea marriage is over. To escape from his problems, he heads deep into the forest, where he meets his mother and falls in love with a girl that was once a snake.
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“To save her from that divine hunt, her father turned her into a laurel bush.”
Dusan Kasalica has created a film focused on a man, Filip, who’s life is changed when his wife says that she’s leaving him for good. The film is divided into two parts: a painful separation and a divine life-changing fairy-tale.
The film starts with a married couple going to a spa to get away from their day-to-day lives and to get a much needed vacation. The location is in a stunning forest, right by the ocean. There’s a sense of solitude and peace. The couple spend most of their days getting massages, doing pool exercises and walking down the many trails in the forest. Filip isn’t in the best health, and as a history professor, he realizes that he needs to cut back on his classes. Mid-way through the vacation though, Filip’s wife bluntly tells him that “it’s been a long hard road for us.” She’s done with their relationship permanently and she leaves the spa early.
Filip is left on his own having thought that his wife would be with him forever, that she would take care of him as he gets older. After finishing with the spa, he decides to head over to his cabin in the woods, and his fairy-tale begins.
This section, though, which is based on a Croatian fairy-tale, destabilises the film as the sudden switch from reality to fairy-tale is jarring and it takes time to get used to it. The symbolism is quite obvious, but it may have been better to have continued the film the same manner as the first section. But despite that, once the fairy-tale is over, Filip returns back to his life in the city. It’s the actual rejuvenation he needs to re-start his life.