A Perfect Day (2015) Poster

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A land of infuriating bureaucracy
Gordon-1112 June 2016
This film tells the daily lives of several aid workers in an armed conflict zone in the Balkans. They have to extract a corpse from a well, but are faced with multiple logistical and bureaucratic challenges.

"A Perfect Day" may look ridiculous and infuriating from the outside, as it tells a story of ridiculous bureaucracy. So if the common goal is to help the people in a war zone, why are there so many restrictions and hurdles to helping others? Well, my workplace is exactly like that, do I can relate to every single minute of it.

The subplot about the local boy Nikola is touching, as it provides a glimpse of hope for humanity - sometimes real help is from unofficial sources!
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9/10
Gritty but authentic examination of aid work in a war zone
mike_uyehara18 October 2015
I just saw a Spanish film that probably enjoyed a limited release in the U.S., although the dialogue is mostly in English – A Perfect Day. In the film, a team of aid workers faces a problem, a corpse is contaminating a well that provides the only potable water in the region, since two other wells are surrounded by mines and cannot be used. The film follows the group as they try to obtain a rope to lift the body out of the well, and examines the difficulties of executing such a small task in a war zone, in this case, the waning days of the Bosnian conflict.

The film resonated with me on several levels. First, of course, I live in the Balkans now, so the language and setting was familiar. (Now I know "konopac" means rope and "bunar" means well!) The landscape in some of the scenes was amazing, and makes me curious to see more of Bosnia now. Second, the cast itself is multinational, reflecting the multinational character of international assistance efforts. This is familiar to me too, since I work in a multinational OSCE Mission. The civilian-military interaction was all too familiar, as were the many scenes with Stryker armored personnel carriers, a common sight during my time in Iraq.

I thought the film provided a very good feel for the frustrations of development work in a war setting. In addition, the dialogue and acting were great. The impressive cast features American Tim Robbins, Spaniard Benicio del Toro, Ukrainian Olga Kurylenko (who was a Bond girl in A Quantum of Solace), Frenchwoman Melanie Thierry, and Bosnian Fedja Stukan. At one point, one of the characters, seeing Olga Kurylenko for the first time, mutters under his breath, "And so where is she from – Models without Borders?" The sub-plot involving the young Bosnian boy, Nikola, who attaches himself to the team, is also great.

This is a powerful film that is authentic in its treatment. I recommend it.
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8/10
Beautiful film
DesiAnge27 January 2016
Beautiful film. I would say even a masterpiece! An excellent acting game,good scenario and cinematography.

Somewhere in the 90s. At the Balkans. The war in Bosnia. A group of aid workers from different countries are trying to help in the middle of a huge after war mess. Trying to do what could be done - in the present case to find a rope, which they could use for taking out corpse from the а well - the only source of fresh water for the local people. During the rope seeking they ran into a bunch of funny or dramatic (mostly both in the same time) situations, but it couldn't be otherwise at the Balkans. ;)

To me "A Perfect Day" is a movie for little things and little actions, which lead to a big change for people.

I highly recommend this movie to all fans to European cinema and to everyone who wants to see something different from all meaningless crap, which flooded us from Hollywood lately.
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8/10
ironically titled pitch black comedy
gregking410 August 2015
Warning: Spoilers
M*A*S*H in Bosnia? It centres around Mambru (Benicio del Toro) and B (Tim Robbins), a couple of aid workers in the Balkans during the conflict of the 90s. Working with an NGO known as Aid Across Borders, they deal with the horrors of the war and the vicious consequences of ethnic hatred almost on a daily basis. The film begins with the pair trying to raise a morbidly obese body from a well in a remote village before it can contaminate the water supply. A lack of suitable rope hampers their mission thus setting them off in search of equipment. Further complications arise when the UN administration specifically forbids them to remove the body for fear of upsetting the locals. The UN adviser who is compiling a report on the team's efficiency is "conflict evaluator" Katya (former Bond girl Olga Kuylenko), who had a relationship with Mambru that ended badly. Tension is in the air as they set off with their interpreter Damir (Fedja Stukan) and new recruit Sophie (Melanie Thierry) on a journey that reveals some of the horror of war. And Nikola (Eldar Reisdovic), an orphan boy they come across, puts a more human face on the carnage and adds a more sympathetic element to the material. A Perfect Day is the first English language feature for Spanish director Fernando Leon de Aranoa (Barrio, Familia, etc), and he maintains a light touch throughout. He mixes black humour with an exploration of the absurdity of military authority and the futility of war. Black humour at the expense of military authority and the helplessness of the UN is reminiscent of the classic M*A*S*H. In one of his better performances for some time Robbins is excellent here with his irreverent sense of humour and acerbic observations, while Del Toro's swarthy presence, cynicism and ironic detachment adds gravitas. Their banter is amusing, and alleviates some of the tension of the dramatic journey through this war torn countryside. Alex Catalan's superb cinematography of the arid mountain landscapes and war devastated backdrop further enhances this enjoyable comedy/drama. This ironically titled pitch black comedy has been one of the early highlights of MIFF.
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10/10
A Perfect Day: a way to look at the world.
niutta-enrico17 January 2016
Spanish physician Paula Farias (Doctors without Borders) wrote a novel based on her experience in the Balkans and the present film (an English spoken Spanish production) represents the cinematographic transposition of her work.

It's a lovely movie with no plot: it just narrates how common people could spend a day (actually a couple of days) trying to help, in the middle of events enormously bigger than them.

There are no heroes here, only experience. No guilt, just sorrow. No right way to do things besides thinking and wishing to care. And then there is fate, of course.

A (good) way to look at the world.
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I enjoyed it
jim9tan7 October 2015
A Spanish film about the Balkan Way and atrocities.

The cast is led by a several Hollywood notables. Decent acting and script. Good pace and cinematography. The movie allows a rare look into the terrible atrocities of civilians terrorizing their neighbors.

As the aid workers try to extricate a body from a well. They are confounded by local apathy and bureaucracy. We do get a look through their eyes as they face jittery militia, armed kids and constant fear of mines and bobby traps.

Faced with daily danger and horrors, some of them develop a cynic sense of humor. They befriend a local boy and we get to see the tragedy faced by the orphans of a civil war.

The feel good ending came as a welcome surprise. Kudos to the director and book author.

I enjoyed it despite the difficult subject matter.
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7/10
A perfect day in an imperfect world
leonanavi26 January 2016
"A Perfect Day" brings us back in 1995 and offers an interesting point of view to the last days of the Bosnian war.

The movie reveals a day of an international team of aid workers. It is a drama with a pinch of black humor. The movie shows the horror of the war, the pain of the local people and alludes the cruelty of religious intolerance. Most importantly it reminds the imperfection of the society and the black spot from the European history that should never be forgotten.

More than 20 years later, although I am also living on the Balkans, I still cannot figure out why this war started. A total madness that led to some many casualties and losses for everyone involved...

The music is great and so is the cast of "A Perfect Day". I always enjoy watching actors like Benicio Del Toro and Tim Robbins. Mélanie Thierry, Fedja Stukan and the young boy Eldar Residovic also played well. Olga Kurylenko, who you may remember as a Bond girl, performed excellently. Btw it is a bit sad that no matter what she does the "Bond" label will always be with her.
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10/10
At the End of the Rope
gtyoshida24 August 2016
A compelling story begins with a simple event that becomes a complex masterpiece. "A Perfect Day" opens as a group of aid workers in the war torn Balkan region struggle to pull a dead corpse out of the village well before the rotting flesh poisons the water. When their only rope breaks and the body falls back down the well, the team leader Mambru (Benicio Del Toro), his garrulous friend, B (Tim Robbins), the novice aid worker, Sophie (Melanie Thierry), and the local translator, Damir (Fedja Stukan) must drive through the countryside searching for another rope. Disheartened by ridiculous peace protocols, hostile natives, and invisible landmines, they find their only salvation is to act humanly in the present rather than cling to their past beliefs or live for their future dreams. Olga Kurylenko (Katya) and Eldar Residovic (Nikola) round out the cast.
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7/10
Aid workers in the Balkans
deloudelouvain21 February 2016
A Perfect Day tells the story of a group of aid workers during the Balkan War. The daily problems they encounter to do their job as good as possible. Don't expect much action or so because the story is just them trying to find a piece of rope so they can extract a dead body out of a well. Seems easy but in a hostile environment where all the concerned parties are not willing to help it becomes a challenge. Even though there is not much action the story is enjoyable to watch. Add on that first class actors and you get a good movie that is worth a watch. Benicio Del Toro and Tim Robbins are always a delight to watch and in A Perfect Day they do what we are used of them. The script is good, the actors are good, the filming is good, and there is even a bit of humor. Entertaining movie.
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8/10
Perfecto: A Spanish Film That Exemplifies The Resurgence of Spanish and Foreign Cinema
YoungCriticMovies2 October 2015
Foreign films rarely get the proper recognition in the English speaking world, be that the US or Great Britain. Only recently have foreign films been allowed to compete in categories other than Best Foreign film at the Academy Awards and the Golden Globes still relegate them to the Foreign Film category. If we look at the box-office results we see an even more drastic condition. The highest grossing foreign film of all time in the US is Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon, which made $127 million, something the small Pitch Perfect film achieved in 2011 which much less effort. But being shunned from awards and shut out from the box office doesn't mean foreign films don't have quality, just look at the great Italian films Cinema Paradiso or Life is Beautiful, or at Jacques Tati's film repertoire, Almodovar and Amenabar in Spain, Michael Haneke in Austria, and the great master Miyazaki and Kurozawa in Japan. This brings us to A Perfect Day the newest film from Spanish director Fernando Leon de Aranoa. The film is made by Spaniards, told in English, and takes place in the Balkans, a very curious mix, which nonetheless produced one of the best films of the year.

A Perfect Day tells the story of a group of aid workers working in the midst of the Balkan crisis in 1995. We have Mambru (Benicio del Toro) the group's unofficial leader and head of security, the wisecracking B (Tim Robbins), the rookie Sophie (Melanie Thierry), and their translator Damir (Fedja Stukan). The film opens with Mambru trying to take a dead body out of a town well. It's the body of an obese man, which later symbolizes of the dreading weight that the group is trying to relieve without help from the UN or the locals, all trying to help a country they barely know. The story intensifies when Mambru picks up a lost local kid named Nikola (Eldar Residovic) who had his soccer ball stolen by bullies, and finally Mambru's ex shows up (Olga Kurylenko) to evaluate the situation in the Balkans. Essentially the movie is a road-trip through the Bosnian countryside, letting you catch a glimpse of the situation that the locals lived in (and still live in today).

What most surprised me about A Perfect Day was the incredible balance it has. When touching upon the subject of war, it is very easy to be extreme. Extreme in the sense that you show a gore- fest and lots of blood and death, or an extreme where you try to cover up everything and have only descriptions from characters of passed events. A Perfect Day achieves its goal of brutalizing war with simple acts, like when a kid pulls out a gun when fighting over a ball, or when a store-owner can't sell his rope because he has them reserved for hangings, or when a shy adolescent watches over an empty warehouse, but is spurred with hope for protecting its flag. It is these little details littered in the story that really give you the sense of suffering and dread that can be seen in times of war.

In terms of the acting, it was also very well balanced. You had Robbins as the comic relief, and Del Toro as the speaker of truth. Both actors give an incredible performance, with visible yet admirable improvisation. Meanwhile the supporting cast also is incredibly solid. The more known names of Olga Kurylenko and Melanie Thierry do a fine job, but the surprises here were in the local actors: Fedja Stukan and Eldar Residovic who both give incredibly raw and layered performances that have us longing to console them, yet you never once pity them in the undignified sense.

Then the cinematography is also very simple, but yet contains a few flourishes and Director of Photography Alex Catalan (Marshland, Unit 7) gives the movie a cold almost wintery look that makes the message and harshness of the story fall sharper and hit you harder.

Finally, the script was incredibly witty and quick. The character development in the two hours of running time is so smooth you barely notice it, but when comparing the characters at the beginning and at the end of the movie you see how subtle Leon de Aranoa was (especially with the character Sophie). The dialogue is absolutely delicious, with the best being quirky exchanges between B and Mambru.

In the end this film, again, exemplifies that "there is life outside the US" and that foreign cinema (in particular Spanish cinema) is growing and cultivating fresh crops of new artists. And in a world of war and sorrow, art is sometimes the only window of hope.
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9/10
A perfect film
Evanoil15 January 2016
Worth every penny and minute you will spend on it. Just as i was thinking it is impossible to make a good movie without love scenes and explosions , this one came.This movie manages to keep you interested and hooked up without any special trying , its has a simple plot and funny moments there are set very smartly in order to deliver a very nice feeling through all of the movie. Good word to the casting group , the actors very good and well chosen . I also must say that i had no boredom moment through the whole film what so ever , i really was surprised about how well this movie was done without putting in it minimum amount of effort .Its worth mentioning that the movie ,even though it is a little subliminal , is telling a story about a conflict and its told without any extreme was scenes so any audience can watch it.
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9/10
Not war-torn-porn! It's a very thoughtful and well done movie.
siderite10 August 2016
At first I was reluctant to see this film. The trailer showed Americans somewhere in the Balkans, observing the cruelty of war and helping out with their Western sensibilities. I've rarely seen a movie with this subject that I enjoyed.

However, A Perfect Day is not that kind of movie. Firstly, it is deeply European! The violence is only hinted at - strange for a film made by a Spaniard :) - yet the viewer is awash in frustrations of the daily life of relief workers: the UN bureaucracy, the indifference of both international authorities and whatever local ones are, the lack of recognition from the people you try to help, lack of resources and going through all kinds of wacky situations.

Yet the movie stands strangely on a pervasively optimistic note. The irony of the title doesn't come from the day not being perfect, but because it is the absolute best day in the life of these people, even when they couldn't do anything but not mess up completely.

The acting is great, the script was fantastic, it is a worthwhile movie to watch.
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5/10
An imperfect truth...
s327616921 December 2015
A Perfect Day offers an insight into the war in the Balkans. What it conveniently fails to acknowledge, is the role US and European factions played in the conflict.

Put simply, the US and its accomplices, applied the economic "thumb screws" to what was Yugoslavia. An ethnically tolerant, prosperous country, that embodied the successful implementation of Communism, something the US simply could not stomach. The result was gradual, economic and social collapse which led to the Balkans conflict.

This is the story of a day in the lives of a group of US/European, aid workers, doing their "aw shucks", jokery, pragmatic best, in the face of the daily horrors of a vicious war between neighbours.

Knowing what led to this conflict I found the tone of this film condescending and somewhat hypocritical. The story, such as it is, is uninspiring. The acting is nothing special either, in spite of a good cast. I'd say in large part this is down to rather limited character development, not the quality of the acting talent involved.

If you come to this film with little knowledge of what led to this conflict, you might have a more positive take on this film. That said, if you are going to offer up what amounts to a "warts and all" commentary on war, I personally think its incumbent on the storyteller to lay bare the complete truth. Five out of ten from me.
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8/10
very god
pedjalazic1 February 2016
I will be very short on my review! A lot of people wrote some very good analysis of the movie which i liked but also i feel need to Say aloud one thing that bothers me..... What makes this film so good,among many other things is neutral point of view BUT it was substantially spoiled by showing only Serbian soldiers who are about to do something bad to the prisoners of war! Serbian soldiers are only side screened in bad light!IT was just one scene,but it could completely disrupt harmony and balance of neutrality! OTher than that......very tough subject for movie but delivered in a excellent way! i will certainly recommend this film to everyone i know
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6/10
We need rope
ferguson-614 January 2016
SPOILER: Greetings again from the darkness. "Somewhere in the Balkans, 1995" is the notice we receive in the opening frame, and the post Kosovo War setting is less about fighting a war and more about finding humanity in the aftermath. Based on the novel by Paula Farias and adapted by Diego Farias and director Fernando Leon de Aranoa, the film follows a group of Aid Across Borders workers as they make their way through the community, attempting to navigate the cultural and political challenges to offering assistance.

The corpse in a drinking water well is the immediate challenge facing the aid workers. Benecio Del Toro (Mambru), Tim Robbins (B), Melanie Thierry (Sophie) and their interpreter Fedja Stukan (Damir) are facing a short deadline in order to save the well from contamination for local villagers. Most of the movie revolves around their quest to find a rope so they can hoist the large corpse from the water. Searching for rope may seem a flimsy story center, but on their journey, we get to know these characters, some of the local cultural differences (in regards to dead bodies), the bureaucratic red tape faced, and the always present danger faced by do-gooders from the outside.

It's understandable that a group in this situation would utilize humor to offset the ugliness, and there is no shortage of one-liners and wise-cracks, especially from B (Robbins). His cowboy approach is in distinct contrast to the veteran Mambru and the idealistic rookie Sophie. Soon enough they are joined by a local youngster named Nikola (Eldar Reisdovic) and an inspector Katya (Olga Kurylenko) sent to determine if the Aid program should continue. Oh yes, Katya and Mumbru are former lovers and it obviously didn't end well.

As they work their way through the ropes challenge and the threat of land mines, we learn through the actions of Mumbru that no matter how much one wants to help, it's only natural (and sometimes painful) to ask yourself if you are truly making a difference, or simply wasting time in a place filled with people who don't seem to care. The specific use of multiple songs is at times distracting, and other times a perfect match (Lou Reed, The Buzzcocks). Del Toro proves yet again that he is a fascinating screen presence, and the message is strong enough to warrant a watch.
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7/10
an unusual and original addition to black comedy war dramas
CineMuseFilms9 June 2016
It is ironic that war is the biggest industry on the planet. Its wider industrial domain includes warrior politicians, arms manufacturers and military forces. Less acknowledged, it also includes those who perpetually seek amelioration of its consequences like the United Nations and various humanitarian aid agencies. All of those groups regularly star in movies but aid workers get little cinematic glory. It is in this wider context that the Spanish-directed film A Perfect Day (2015) is an unusual and original addition to black comedy war dramas, least of all because the way it avoids typical war movie scenarios and narratives. It covers 'one perfect day' during the military wind-down in the Balkans crisis of mid 1990s and is a refreshing, entertaining and informative insight into the role of aid workers when the big guns go quiet.

The story begins and ends with the image of a big fat corpse in a well, dumped deliberately to pollute village water. In between we see the frantic efforts by a small group of aid workers to find scarce rope that can haul him out, and rope becomes a metaphor to join several unconnected incidents that make up the narrative. There Is no sound of bombs or signs of fighting; we only see a beautiful country full of silent monuments to the devastation of war. Bombed-out ghosts of villages, homeless children, poverty and toxic hygiene are some of an aid worker's challenges and black humour is the universal panacea for coping. On this day, the group must deal with the risk of hidden road mines in cattle carcasses, villager distrust and military animosity towards interfering aid workers, and a United Nations bureaucracy that shows little sensitivity towards dispossessed victims of war. Oh, and find a soccer ball for a young boy.

As with all character-driven films, this one is less about what happens and more about what it is like to be there. The characters built with re-purposed M.A.S.H. traits that are likable, funny and plausible, and the acting is top-class. There are no glory hounds in the group and each has their own coping strengths and emotional foibles. The director orchestrates the characters and sub- stories with perfect tempo to produce a story that is totally engaging if not gripping. You might wonder how a group of loosely disciplined and unaccountable workers can roam freely across a war-ravaged country, or whether the final scene is actually a political statement about their true value. If so, the film has made its mark.
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5/10
Failed attempt at blending realism and absurdist humor
lucasversantvoort18 November 2015
Warning: Spoilers
Well, I called it. As soon as I saw the trailer, the only word I could think of was 'aimless'. And sure enough, the ironically titled A Perfect Day, turns out to be a not so perfect day at the theatre. The film tries desperately to combine road trip elements with social commentary on warfare and aid workers in Balkan conflict zones, but the end result is boring and pointless, an unbalanced mess of ideas. Road trip? More like road tripe.

Mambrú (Benicio del Toro) is overseeing the removal of a fat corpse from a well 'somewhere in the Balkans' as the film puts it. The rotting corpse doesn't exactly help things on the sanitary front, as you can imagine. Like my patience, the rope is wearing thin and rope snaps. So begins a trip across the countryside to secure some new rope. He is joined by his rather eccentric partner, B (Tim Robbins, who's sporting the biggest, most unnatural looking set of pearly whites I've ever seen), new blood Sophie, a translator, and an old flame, Katya (Olga Kurylenko). Along the way, they'll meet people, bump into the U.N., etc. I can't sum it up much better than that.

I'll get right down to it: this movie is so terribly balanced I'd almost say it suffers from bipolar disorder. I get that it tries to combine the appeal of a road trip movie with some serious storytelling, but it just never works. You jump from a zany scene to a sad one, all the while questioning how you're supposed to take any of it seriously. A perfect example: early on, when the new girl Sophie sees the body in the well, she freaks out in a way that feels like it should elicit laughter: 'haha, that's cute, she's not used to bodies yet.' Mambrú and B's reactions seem to confirm this. Later, Mambrú and Sophie are in a ruined house looking for rope. Sophie opens a door, but doesn't notice a body hanging behind her. Mambrú tries to spare her the trauma, but Sophie of course sees the body and freaks out. She freaks out in the same way again, but this time it's supposed to be taken seriously. But how can I take it seriously when the film was using her reaction for laughs earlier? Other examples include the gang driving through the mountains as rock music plays, when suddenly we get a scene where they have to drive away from soldiers rounding up people to be shot; A major subplot involves Mambrú and Katya who used to be lovers. Mambrú's surprised by her appearance and they have some conversations where they dance around the issue. Despite seeing someone else, he still has feelings for her, although he wouldn't admit to this. The same goes for her. Watching their banter is about as interesting as you'd expect, but in the end it doesn't contribute anything to the plot nor does B contribute anything except a few laughs. Sophie goes from oblivious newbie to 'having learned the ways of the world', but it's not the focus of the film, so why should I care? Needless to say, the acting, while decent, cannot save this walking identity crisis. Not even Tim Robbins and his great white teeth can save it. It's not a case of the actors failing the movie, but the movie failing the actors. It's the kind of experience where, instead of being absorbed by the *clears throat* 'drama', you're trying to peek inside the actors' heads and wonder what's really going through their minds.

I can see what the filmmakers were going for, but the few scenes that bordered on interesting just made me wish they didn't waste their time with boring romances and botched attempts at road trippy humor and instead took things a little more seriously. There are poignant scenes, like the one where Mambrú struggles with his own uselessness when attempting to help others. Here, notions of helping others on a large or small scale, bureaucracy, usefulness, etc. are all touched upon, but the film's all-over-the-place attitude prevents you from taking it as seriously as you'd want to. Right when the credits started rolling, there were high school kids in the front row clapping. Pray for them, dear reader. Pray for them.
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9/10
A Touch Of MASH In The Balkens
LouieInLove23 January 2016
Warning: Spoilers
This film is excellent. It's simple & well delivered. It's humorous, whilst at the same time, can hook you with dread. I really am impressed. More films of this caliber need to come out of Hollywood & less of the shallow, pandering to the iPad generation, one directional, all show & no knickers trash that's now the standard.

The acting is excellent & I was pleasantly surprised by Mélanie Thierry's performance which was top notch. Very understated, yet compelling. All four leading actors did very well. There's not much more to say other than to recommend it.

NB. The fact that the film is set in the time of The Balkans (3rd) war really does add the dread & menace as we all know of the vile & horrid things that occurred.

Oscar should take notice.
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10/10
excellent movie, highly recommended
aidasalkic23 January 2016
Warning: Spoilers
I highly recommend this movie to anybody who either knows anything or nothing about the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina. It was quite refreshing to finally hear proper Bosnian language used as well as real Bosnians acting as one. I have seen too many movies where anybody with the slightest Russian accent would try to pass for a former Yugoslav, taking advantage of English speaking audience who could not tell the difference. I've been through a war myself and I worked for UN as an interpreter and I can confirm similar situations happened in the North West of Bosnia where I worked. The UN role in this movie feels very realistic. This movie reminds me a lot of No Man's Land movie by Danis Tanovic that won Oscar several years ago, as well as a similar situation I witnessed while working for UN and this I believe could be taken for a very realistic movie. I really enjoyed it for the sake of good Bosnian humor!!I was pleasantly surprised with the famous cast as well as interesting plot.
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3/10
I honestly had to turn it off it was so boring and annoying
gsh9996 May 2016
Warning: Spoilers
What you've got here is a movie about a team of relief workers, which includes two supermodels, driving SUVs around a former Balkan conflict zone, trying to get a corpse out of a well, but stifled by incompetent and stubborn bumbling military officials. Got about 80 percent through the movie and it was just annoying me more than anything else. The soundtrack is totally inappropriate, with rock jams and guitar riffs that just seem completely wrong for this film. It's really pretty boring and it seems the movie doesn't know what it wants to be - a dark comedy, a straight comedy or a straight drama. Tim Robbins loopy character is annoying but does get a couple laughs. The point seems to be to make U.N. military authorities in a tense conflict zone appear petty and bureaucratic. I've been a military member working with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) like the one portrayed in this film and we did absolutely everything in our power to provide the NGO assistance and security. With the A- list actors and a healthy budget, this film had potential, but it's a wasted effort. Considering I couldn't make it all the way through, I was generous in giving it a "3" and that's because I enjoyed looking at Melanie Thierry.
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8/10
The day when an adventure for a rope begins.
Reno-Rangan23 May 2016
This is an English language Spanish road-adventure that was adapted from a book. Takes place in the Yugoslavia during the end of its civil war. Other than that there's no detail about when and where it sets in or is it inspired by the real story. Shot in the beautiful mountain roads and villages. The camera work was so good, I loved the aerial photography that revealed the beauty of those mountainous regions, despite the war atmosphere.

This is a surprise film, because I never heard it before and did not know what to expect from it, but in the end I'm very pleased with the overall product. That's what usually we want in a film than to follow a project from its announcement till it hit the screens, then sometimes we may end in a disappointment after the long wait. So I guess this is better.

A simple theme, but the plot developed into a greater venture. It revolves around a bunch of aid workers who were deployed to help in the war torn villages. When they find a dead body dumped in a well which is the main source for the drinking water in the region, they try to remove it. But it is not that simple, after failed in their first attempt, they look for another rope to pull the corpse out. So the adventure begins to revolve around one mission. In the remaining tale, it reveals theirs unpleasant events of the day, that's why it's called 'A Perfect Day'.

This is not a war movie, but with the backdrop of war the entire concept was developed. It is obviously a comedy-drama, and a very good film on this theme you would find at present. It does have a couple of intense scenes that push us to the edge of the seats. No nudes or the sex, no violence either, not even tortures or the deaths. Still, it is rated best suitable for adults only because of a few dialogues related to the sex. Other than that this film does not deserve uppercase r for the US market.

"Welcome to Konopac, the rope capital of the world."

The international cast was awesome for such a story. Individually, I liked everyone's performances, no one was lesser than the others among the lead characters. The only drawback was the underdeveloped characters, but that does not affect us the tale to entertain. They are not a medic team or any other similar kind, but very unusual characters that you have ever seen in a film. There's no physical stretch like they have done some tough stunt sequences, but they all quite beautifully exhibited their roles as the UN aid workers.

A single day tale, and the mix of both - realism and humours. Just depicted how a day of work would be in the places where it was devastated by war, especially representing the UNO and encountering problem for a simple matter. In addition to that, what happens when some old unresolved issues between two people reappear. All these were narrated very funnily, and sometime the fact of the war takes some of the scenes to the serious.

Like I said I enjoyed it a lot, and I believe it is capable to pull out another film to follow. Yep, like I always say when I like a film, I won't say no for a sequel to this. Because what the film characters accomplished in the end of the narration has looked to me just a beginning of another adventure. It might mean the loop in the tale to end on a high note, yet give an opportunity for another possible venture. I have no idea about the book, but it sounds good to me and I'll pray for it to happen. It was not a masterpiece, but a cute little film, which is kind of unpredictable and that's the its strength. I hope you all would give it a try, because it is worth it.

8/10
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10/10
Perfect and realistic story.
mmd-5836326 January 2016
A perfect look from the side of Civilian workers in hostile environments/war zones. I think the script is correct and please don't expect adventure story from the Civilian Aid workers in war zones. I have been as a Civilian Contractor in hostile environments in two different War zones.Believe me the movie is correct in many ways and deserves more then 10 minutes of standing ovation as stated in Trivia. The movie tells us not just War is bad,its also tells us how our hands are tied against Army Protocols and bureaucracy even in this areas. No matter how many bad things you see,and you know in just minutes you can fix the situation to help local people but suddenly you hear the voice of a commanding Person ''do your job,you are not here to empathize with the locals''. So i can totally understand the message that the movie gives to the audience. And Please don't forget war is money for Companys but its a big wound that will never heal for the Civilians. So it its really worth to watch the movie.
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8/10
Last of the Summer Wine in Bosnia
slydon1318 January 2016
Benicio del Torro and Tim Robbins are two long time aid workers in post war Bosnia. On this day they are joined by a bright eyed first timer and an experience woman (who is also an old flame of Del Torros).

Along with their interpreter and a young boy, the main goal on this day is to remove a body from a well. To achieve this they must over come practice and organisational hurdles.

In a country where the natives have lost so much, it must be difficult for the volunteers to stick to it but the comedy is tender and refreshing.

Whoever chose the music has great taste and it lightens the mood at times. This isn't a film for people waiting for the next superhero flic. It deals with a topic nobody is in a rush to examine.
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1/10
Plot-less bore of film
CineCritic251719 October 2015
A team of aid workers lead by Del Torro and Robbins are bumbling around somewhere in the Balkans in search of a rope. The rope is needed to lift a corpse from a well, the only operational well in the area. The movie relies heavily on its script and the two main leads but fails miserably at being anything other than a drag. Terrible performances by both Olga Kurylenko and Mélanie Thierry further ruin any credibility the movie might have regained. As if the soundtrack wasn't already thoroughly corny.

For a film that relies almost solely on its script, it is remarkable they couldn't write something other than the ridiculous and repetitive back-and-forths between the dismal characters to fill the runtime of the movie. One truly wonders what Robbins and Del Toro ever saw in it to commit to such an aggravatingly dull and witless scenario.

1/10
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7/10
A perfect movie (well, almost)
rubenm20 March 2016
There are not many lighthearted films about wars, but this is definitely one. It's full of black humour, of the kind that cynical people enjoy who realize that in a war, making jokes is the best recipe against indifference.

The cynical people in this case are two aid workers for the imaginary organization 'Aid Across Borders', providing humanitarian aid in Bosnia at the time of the ceasefire. They are trying to remove a human corpse from a deep well, in order to prevent this source of drinking water from getting contaminated. The problem is that they need a long and strong rope, which is hard to come by in a war torn country.

The film documents their search for the rope, which leads to all kinds of dramatic, funny and hopeless situations. The script is very clever, because in their search, they come across all aspects of war. The useless killing and human despair on the one hand, and the ineffectiveness of aid workers and UN forces on the other. But how hopeless their quest for the rope sometimes seems to get, they never lose their sense of humour.

There are also some side stories: by coincidence, the two aid workers, their Bosnian interpreter and their female co-worker are accompanied by a Russian female UN official who also is the former lover of one of them, and by a Bosnian child who turns out to be instrumental in the search for the rope.

Benicio Del Toro and Tim Robbins are pitch-perfect as the two aid workers. They share some very sharp dialogue. The female leads are a bit less convincing, partly because under all circumstances they both look like models, straight from the catwalk. Which is okay from an aesthetic point of view, of course. The soundtrack, with some unusual rock songs, adds to the edgy and offbeat atmosphere in this film.

The only drawback is the bland title. The original Spanish title, 'El Pozo' or 'The Well' is a little bit better, 'Fatso' could be an alternative, but 'Rope' would have been perfect. Unfortunately, that one has already been taken by someone else.
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