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Kontroll (2004)



Average Rating: 7/10
Reviews Counted: 66
Fresh: 54 | Rotten: 12

Kontroll is a smart thriller that's dark, gritty, and funny.


Average Rating: 6.6/10
Critic Reviews: 21
Fresh: 15 | Rotten: 6

Kontroll is a smart thriller that's dark, gritty, and funny.



liked it
Average Rating: 4/5
User Ratings: 7,908

My Rating

Movie Info

For his feature debut, L.A.-born Hungary resident Nimród Antal made Kontroll, a farcical look at the Budapest subway system, about the crazy ticket agents who earn their living there and the hostile citizens they deal with on a daily basis. At the center of it all is Bulcsú (Sándor Csányi), a quiet fellow who leads his ragtag crew that includes the Professor (Zoltán Mucsi), the nagging, burned-out elder of the group; Muki (Csaba Pindroch), the goofy narcoleptic; the disheveled Lecsó (Sándor

Aug 30, 2005


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All Critics (75) | Top Critics (25) | Fresh (54) | Rotten (12) | DVD (5)

You don't need a deep, dark forest to tell an unsettling fable about the struggle for freedom or the battles waged between the shadows and the things that glow.

July 1, 2005 Full Review Source: Denver Post
Denver Post
Top Critic IconTop Critic

As a group of episodes, the movie keeps our interest not by linear plot, but by finely drawn characterizations.

June 23, 2005 Full Review Source: Arizona Republic
Arizona Republic
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Antal keenly juggles black comedy, character types and genre styles, making the most of the weird angles and inherent dark creepiness of his chosen backdrop.

May 27, 2005 Full Review Source: Seattle Times
Seattle Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Singular in its location and singular in mood.

May 27, 2005 Full Review Source: San Francisco Chronicle
San Francisco Chronicle
Top Critic IconTop Critic

Kontroll is the first work by a director who is clearly gifted and who has found a way to make a full-bore action movie on a limited budget.

May 27, 2005 Full Review Source: Chicago Sun-Times
Chicago Sun-Times
Top Critic IconTop Critic

It's not a perfect film by any means, but it certainly succeeds quite well in telling its tale with enough charm and gore to keep thing interesting.

June 21, 2007 Full Review Source: Film Scouts
Film Scouts

Even though we spend the entire film underground, Hungary has never looked more buoyant.

March 1, 2007 Full Review Source: Film Journal International
Film Journal International

Though the film is crowd-pleasing enjoyable, it never fully brings in enough light to its underground setting to completely satisfy as a fully realized work.

November 3, 2005 Full Review Source: Ozus' World Movie Reviews
Ozus' World Movie Reviews

[A] nimble dark comedy.

August 4, 2005 Full Review Source: Orlando Weekly
Orlando Weekly

This is supremely confident filmmaking for a newcomer, and should give Antal a one-way ticket to bigger things.

July 28, 2005 Full Review
Capital Times (Madison, WI)

Antal proudly wears Tarantino influences, lingering in humorous conversations that race out on tangents, adding flavor to characters while also subtly developing themes.

July 22, 2005 Full Review Source: Arizona Daily Star
Arizona Daily Star

Antal has a bright future.

July 21, 2005
Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

Os personagens e o próprio conceito do filme săo interessantes, mas o fraco roteiro acaba desperdiçando o potencial do projeto e a boa direçăo do estreante Antal.

July 9, 2005
Cinema em Cena

The constant gear-changing -- or tonal shifts -- may put some audience members off a bit. But it also has style to burn, and most of the cast is appealing, especially the brooding Csanyi, and Balla, whose sunny presence brightens up the dark proceedings.

June 25, 2005 Full Review Source: Deseret News, Salt Lake City
Deseret News, Salt Lake City

Writer-director Nimrod Antal shifts from breakneck action to thoughtful romance ..., as he reveals a colorful and chaotic underground.

June 24, 2005
Salt Lake Tribune

Debut writer-director Nimród Antal uses the anti-hero Bulcsú (Sándor Csányi) as an effective symbol of repressed rebellion.

June 17, 2005

You might wonder at the end what happened to the plot, but the mood, characters and look are so striking that you really won't miss it.

June 16, 2005 Full Review Source: Las Vegas Weekly
Las Vegas Weekly

Kontroll throws beaucoup intriguing mysteries at us, but the solutions aren't worth the trip.

June 9, 2005 Full Review Source: St. Paul Pioneer Press
St. Paul Pioneer Press

[S]elf-assured, totally enrapturing... makes you realize how few directors achieve such a necessary confidence in their own hocus pocus...

June 6, 2005 Full Review Source: Flick Filosopher
Flick Filosopher

Were it not for the subtitles, it would be virtually guaranteed instant cult status

May 28, 2005 Full Review Source: New Times
New Times

Audience Reviews for Kontroll

"No Ticket"

Solid film about a crew of subway control officers working in the underworld that is the Budapest subway system. The film works as a dark comedy and very gritty thriller.

As mentioned, the film is set entirely within the Budapest subway system. Our main characters are a team of control officers, responsible for checking the tickets for every subway train passenger, due to the subway working by way of the honor system. The lead role belongs to Sándor Csányi, who plays Bulcsu, a man that has been down, underground for way too long. Bulcsu manages to meet a woman, have gritty adventures with his fellow workers, and spend time with an old train diver. While the plot is somewhat episodic, there is the matter of a hooded figure, who is pushing people onto the tracks.

The film was directed by Nimrod Antal, a Hungarian, who has since made a couple simple thrillers, Vacancy and Armored, and is currently working on the Robert Rodriguez produced Predators film. I mention Rodriguez, because Antal strikes me as a guy who works very much like him. His films are low budget, efficiently made, and manage to have a slick feel; delivering a lot with a little. This film is no different, working in one location and making the most with it.

There is a good amount of creativity at play here, and I enjoyed it.

Szofi: [at subway vending machines] Nice place. Come here often?
Bulcsú: Only when I really want to impress a girl.
May 25, 2010

Super Reviewer

A crew of borderline-incompetent subway cops ('Kontrollers') deal with abusive commuters, a rash of apparent suicides, and dense symbolism. Shot entirely in the Budapest subway, this accomplished debut mixes elements of comedy, romance, thrillers, and obscure arthouse allegory into a narrative that, against all odds, works.
March 25, 2010
Greg S

Super Reviewer

dark dark dark and funny low budget thriller set in the budapest underground with a host of oddball characters. i really enjoyed this
December 8, 2009
Stella Dallas

Super Reviewer

The setting feels more like a nightclub than a subway system. Cool scenes and music score, but the film tries to combine one too many genres to really grab hold of an audience.
March 19, 2009

Super Reviewer

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