Director: Alexandros Avranas
Miss Violence intrigues in its opening scene, where Angeliki on her eleventh birthday, she looks directly at the camera, smiles, and jumps off the railings of her apartment balcony, down to death. There is a connect she establishes with the camera (the audience), which is repeated in the movie a few more times, almost as if beckoning the audience’s nod.
A family of seven, out of which one jumps off the roof. The premise is grave, and the theme is revolting. In the early stages, you’d see the family, but you won’t be sure who’s who. Finally when that clears up, you’d realize that it did not matter, since your first misconceptions about the relationships weren’t completely off course.
Once after the accident, after the initial shock wears off, the movie starts to move slowly, working on the mundane. Each character does her/his own thing. Although the shadow of something sinister hovers above them all, their misplaced reactions cause more wonder than apprehension.
The film talks more about the problems of a single man, the patriarch of the family, than the problems of single family units. Themis Panou, as the grandfather and the patriarch, though in theory is a chilling image, visually, is less impactful owing to too many distractions around.
The social welfares team that comes in to investigate, does a poor job of it, and that in itself is discouraging. Yet the drama is upheld by the sudden twists in the plot.
Although it’s disturbing, things were largely in picture, and there wasn’t quite the gasp of surprise as we reached the climax. We’re intrigued about all the adult characters—the grandmother in particular—was she just a victim or the manipulator, or more? Despite the questions, somehow the drama failed to make me awestricken, or devastated as was expected of the theme.
The climax clinches it; there is substantial amount of ambiguity there that has been worked around the characters and the plot, but was it a bit too late for the grand twist, or was that timely enough? However be it, Miss Violence does violate, and turns the world around by a ninety degree, if not a total swirl.