Sorry, Nobles

Review of Nobody (Kanenas) at Seattle International Film Festival by Iman B.

Nobody parallels the story of Romeo and Juliet. Instead of the noble families the Montagues and Capulets entangling in Verona, we observe the intertwining of Russian gangsters and Albanian gangsters in Greece. Car races replace street brawls, but the provocation and bickering remain consistent in both stories. Our Juliet is replaced with an Albanian immigrant named Julia, our Romeo, a Russian mysteriously named Nobody. Their story starts with a bumping-into while Nobody delivers pizza, but their romance doesn't really take off 'til the next night at a dance. The story is brought forth in a way that you may be able to easily predict, but it is told in context of modern times. We see the struggle for a better life through an education, and the striving for a better life in a another country--a concept both gangs can relate to. Staying true to Shakespearean style, the storyline is full of romance and turmoil. Fraternity at its greatest, endless forgiving, and a never-forgetting sense of vindication rule the vibe of this film as the love escalates and the tensions burgeon.

This film captures the heart of its audience throughout, and it keeps you engaged and wondering how love at first sight can overcome the oppression of the opposing camps. Accompanied by a soundtrack that is just the right amount not to overpower each moment, but to maintain each scene's poise while stealing the heart of the viewer. This film is able to take the everlasting message of Romeo and Juliet, but present it in such a form that everyone can relate to, even those struggling to make ends meet; sorry nobles, no more exclusive rights on fairy tales. Furthermore, the strength of fraternity is tested when Nobody puts his camaraderie to the test with his pursuit of a law degree and relationship with Julia, whose brother imprisoned a member of Nobody's fraternity. But, we see that the sense of brotherhood between the boys never fails as they remain true to their friend and help Nobody through his trials.

It is a given that Nobody is set up to parallel Romeo and Juliet, so the storyline (the dance, balcony scene, quarreling, and running away, etc.) might seem predictable. But the director does a swell job of making the parallels indirect and obscure, and adding his own twists, which make this heart-enchanting film an entertaining must-see for all movie-goers.

Part of Seattle International Film Festival

Playing at

AMC Pacific Place:

Friday, May 27 @ 7:00 PM
Tuesday, May 31 @ 4:30 PM
Everett Performing Arts Center:
Sunday, May 29 @ 1:00 PM

More info at

Recommended for ages 15+ for gang violence and a scene of sexuality
In Greek, Russian, and Albanian with English subtitles

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