Miss Violence (2013) Poster

(2013)

User Reviews

Review this title
23 Reviews
Sort by:
Filter by Rating:
9/10
Disintegrating patriarchy: Dogtooth taken a step further
grybop19 January 2016
Warning: Spoilers
The movie can be seen as an allegory that utilizes what seems like an impossible plot to make some points about a patriarchal family system, that's ever so common in Greece (surely in other places, too).

I'm Greek myself and several of the situations the characters face in the movie are very familiar to me. The father enjoys ultimate and unquestionable respect by the members of the family. The mother stays passive, her role confined mostly to everyday chores. The kids are obedient little soldiers. Any thought of rebellion is suppressed by deep fear. These are all things I've witnessed and heard of myself, from friends and relatives. I remember various incest rape cases having surfaced through the years - they still do.

Avranas took his story to the extremes, to point out how rotten the institution we call the "holy Greek family" is. The apartment door is locked. To a patriarch, it doesn't matter what happens behind it, as long as it stays there. It's his family after all. What matters is his own face to society, to keep up appearances. What matters is the surface, not the substance.

I've heard so many women in my life saying "Oh yes, he may beat his wife up, but at least he doesn't cheat on her!" or "He may cheat on her, but he always provides food for his family!" What is pictured in the movie is the continued victimization of the female. The woman is rendered to an object for pleasure, for cooking, for cleaning, anything to satisfy the primary male in the family. The father must be obeyed and respected at all times, even though he's an unemployed middle aged man who can't provide much to his family - and this will not be questioned either: he's the MAN. It's so deeply ironic that the song he forces his little girl to dance to is, in fact, feminist at best, and a hymn to misandry at worst (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rwbYEOKzBYo).

The females have learned to accept their degradation as something normal. The oldest daughter feels numb, not being able to wake up to reality. Her kids, her own brother and sister apparently, she knows will go down the same road themselves. When one of them understands the true nature of her family relationships, she commits suicide. Again, the family's priority is to save face - it was an accident, not a suicide.

This attitude, so prevalent in Greece until recently, is what I believe is the director's target here. Some scenes may be hard to watch, but he didn't really cross the line that much, or as far as he could have. From the moment I realized what was going on, the story made sense on so many levels, I was really at awe with what the director accomplished: a film that's both a psychological thriller and a cold, yet in-depth cultural study.
28 out of 33 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
Amazing film!
trailofdead1 October 2013
Miss Violence was the first film I've seen at this years Vancouver International Film Festival and what a fantastic film it is. There are similarities to Giorgos Lanthimos's films (Dogtooth, Alps) where you spend the first third of the film figuring out the relationships of the characters to each other and the rules of the world they live in. The rest of the film is spent either reveling in either horror or fascination in the world and characters created.

This story is given to you in small pieces which build upon your understanding of who these people are. This in turn makes you a very active film-goer and creates a feeling of investment. When Miss Violence reaches it's climax I could feel the collective sighs from the 200+ people gathered to watch it at the festival.

Be warned though...it is heavy, but so worth it. You'll be talking about it for awhile to come.
46 out of 65 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
As the mystery unravels, the tension increases.
aland-34 October 2013
Warning: Spoilers
Of the 40 or so films I have seen so far at the Vancouver International Film Festival, this is the best. No. Wait. It is the best film I have ever seen. In the opening scene, Angeliki calmly leaves her eleventh birthday party, steps over the balcony of her family's Athens apartment and drops to her death. The reason for her suicide drives the rest of the film. Of course, your first guess is that she is being sexually abused, probably by her grandfather, the only man in a family consisting of two women, one teenage girl (besides Angeliki), a 10-year-old boy and an eight-year-old girl. But not so fast. The grandfather, brilliantly played by Themis Panou, overcomes his embarrassment over his grand-daughter's death and leads the way in helping social services uncover the dark secrets of his family. And under the skillful direction of Alexandros Avranas, who also co-wrote the script, as the secrets are revealed, so the tension increases. But suspend your suspicions until the last ten minutes -- they may surprise you. Great acting by all the cast. I am reluctant to paste the cliché "riveting' to any film. Except for this one.
55 out of 79 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
Sickened but could not stop watching
maria-konidaris1 December 2015
Warning: Spoilers
**SPOILERS**

I felt sickened from the start. This film was set beautifully, the sight alone of the young girls dressed similarly in white in the opening scene was enough to pre-empt the questionable family dynamics for me. And then it just kept escalating until it reached a horrific level. I keep seeing reviews that compare this to Lanthimos' Dogtooth in the way it focuses on the institution of family as well as similarities with the film's cinematic elements, such as use of silence. The main difference for me was how Miss Violence, considerably a product of the Greek 'Weird Wave', is on a completely different side of the spectrum of weird than Dogtooth. The violence and power relations aside, Dogtooth's disturbed themes were a bit absurdist and I found myself laughing uncomfortably a few times ("Mum, two little zombies!"). Miss Violence's weirdness felt less absurd and not at all laughable. The characters' had a more accurate understanding of the world and in effect it made the disturbing themes of abuse more horrific. Brilliantly directed, I couldn't stop watching this film even when it made me very uneasy as the narrative sequence had me wanting to see if all my horrible assumptions were going to be confirmed... and indeed they were exceeded in all the worst ways. I don't know if I would have watched this knowing how central the child sexual exploitation and abuse would be to the story. I don't regret watching it though and so respect the construction of suspense, tension and the representation of the family not being an ideal institution as it is commonly portrayed in general Greek culture and past cinema.
9 out of 11 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Most tragic of Greek tragedies
olastensson1313 May 2014
11-year-old girl jumps from the balcony and is killed at her birthday. Why? We finally will find out exactly why she did it, but we have to pass through hell first.

Forget all the cheap scary tricks you know from common horror movies. The threat here is real. There are no surprises, no jump scenes, just constant darkness with a family tyrant as its source. Hopelessness for sure, but in an environment which is quite common.

Greece performs a film wonder at the moment. Dark forces meet the surface and there's no need for the supernatural or lots of splatter and gore. There are worse things than that in daily life.
33 out of 50 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
Materialist itself
chaos-rampant8 November 2013
A well known Buddhist proverb goes that 'pain is inevitable, suffering is optional'. By extension violence is inevitable, loss and tragedy are inevitable, but how we let them into our lives makes a world of difference. It matters how a filmmaker reconfigures anxieties into the heightened reality of film, it matters how we as viewers allow our gaze to lucidly inhabit things.

Here's what I mean. In a nutshell the film is about limits to vision. A father keeps his middle-class family under strict and abusive control, almost trapped in their apartment, with exchange for the relative comforts this life provides them. The fridge is always stocked, they can have icecream, and once they finish their homework the reward is a trip to the beach, sometimes postponed.

Ostensibly we have a powerful indictment of this materialist life that in some level is true for most, a life with no spiritual horizons, a boxed safety where mechanical effort is punished or rewarded, and the ripples of violence it sends out.

But if you really look? If you don't just accept this passively wrapped in a box as a lesson on evil? In other words if you adopt the questioning attitude that the father inside the film denies his family and is part of the damage to them, if you begin to question these imposed walls and limits?

The film itself is materialist and constricts our vision. The camera always frames cleanly, the actors are waxen figures on wallpaper, the dialogue is stilted. Animal instincts are even hammered home with footage of apes on TV. All deliberately so but this changes little if it doesn't wake us from our viewing stupor. We have here a world of stifled imagination by stifling ours.

Deeper, the film is content with just the lesson, we never finally at some point enter these lives to know the people behind the masks. We see these people just as Welfare does when they visit, not from within their world but as calculating arbiters. We miss the powerful tension that upsets social workers in these cases, where the abusive parent is still in spite of everything else looked up as a father.

So instead of being called to juggle these states of conflicting truth, we end up after a certain point with an incomprehensible monster and his victims. Of course these monsters exist, which brings us back to how a filmmaker chooses to reconfigure the existence. Saying 'but it happens' doesn't cut it. So do you provoke a damning answer that we can put aside and forget, cleansed for the night that we are not these people, if still mildly unnerved that they are around, or do you evoke a deeper value that will keep me up at night, questioning the limits I inhabit as safe?

This is clean and narrow, there is too much Haneke here and not enough Pasolini or Cassavetes.

Remember Woman Under the Influence? A schizophrenic mother who in the calculating eyes of Welfare would be incompetent to raise children, and yet we see her love and ache, and confused and deathly afraid, and still cutting herself on her broken pieces as she reaches out to love. Marvelous film. But that required patient sculpting in time, an interested eye, ambiguous horizon, wanting to know from the inside.

There is one thing here that I liked. We are not immediately sure just who is who in this family, mother or daughter, father or grandfather. Linked to sex, it creates a powerful tension. We have to search for and define our own limits in this house, then break free of them to examine that self which assumed a narrative: does it change something if the old woman is not the mother? Is the indifference or pain less real?

Too bad. I saw the film at its Greek premiere a few days ago, with the director and cast in attendance. In the ensuing Q&A, no one really questioned the experience of the film for what it presented, at least no one that was comfortable to do so in front of a crowd.
31 out of 55 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
A Slow movie that gets disturbing by the minute.
Amyth472 January 2019
My Rating : 7/10

'Miss Violence' maintains a certain tension throughout and because of the incredible acting you do end up believing their miserable life and their family secrets.

It's a disturbing watch and I can only recommend it to moviegoers that like such content - it also has a somewhat of an arthouse feeling to it which I found appealing.
4 out of 6 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
On her 11th birthday, Angelika commits suicide, stirring the murky waters of a family drama.
dimitraz-999-84934112 May 2014
Warning: Spoilers
The film is well crafted, actors are brilliant, cinematography is interesting, but it explores what Festen has done better in the past. Don't get me wrong here, it's really a well made movie, but it seems to me that a lot of modern directors who like to be independent always prefer to explore the darkest of our traits and every anomaly we might have engulfed in our souls, instead of what's hopeful and beautiful and loving. Between the idiocy and predictability of some Hollywood blockbusters and the depression of some films that fall in the "arty" category, I really don't know what's worse, in my humble opinion. There really must be something in between! The production design is anachronistic, in the euro era there couldn't be so many stuff and furniture reminiscent of the 70's and early eighties. But sod that, it's only a detail that might not be of interest to most, the question that swells up in my chest is this: Seriously,why do movies that make us feel so bad always get the awards? I need to watch "The party" and eat a tub of ice cream after watching this.
9 out of 20 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
no attempt to set this awful business in the past
christopher-underwood3 October 2016
Sometimes it occurs to me I should be concerned at some of the films that Amazon recommends to me on the basis of my known preferences and this one probably beats them all. It is a very, very good film but I wouldn't truly recommend it to anyone. At least not someone I didn't know very well and could be sure that they could deal with the worryingly believable and atrocious basis of this film. It begins innocuously enough with a daughter's eleventh birthday. And yet wasn't I slightly perturbed at the flat and colourless surroundings, the spooky lack or gaiety, the fact they were dancing to a Leonard Cohen track? And the way the 'father' held his daughter? Almost immediately there is a most dramatic incident and then we are taken back to a measured family routine where everything is under control and we get drawn further into this only seeming innocuous family. There are truly dreadful events represented here and although most of this gradually dawns upon the viewer during the course of the film there are a couple of openly distressing scenes. There is no attempt to set this awful business in the past and we can only guess at how surprising this depiction is to a Greek audience, if indeed it had a theatrical release. People and glass houses and all that so I will say no more other than that maybe we in the UK need such a brave film maker to look further into some of our more murky corners that are, similarly, maybe not too far from home.
6 out of 12 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
3/10
Pointless drag
dthwlkr12 January 2019
Warning: Spoilers
Movie opens with a 11 year old girl jumping to her death on her birthday. That is probably the most interesting part of the movie. What follows is a story that meanders slower than a slug going the opposite site on a walkalator. The whole movie feels rather pretentious, trying to be intellectual when all there is to it is a middle aged unemployed man pimping his family, having sex with his daughters. Barely develops characters, story tries to be cryptic about the whole thing till the last 10 mins of the movie.
4 out of 7 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
2/10
a young girl decided to end her life, with a mysterious smile on her face. the movie revolves around how her family copes after her tragic death.
sueharriz6 April 2017
Warning: Spoilers
this movie is heavy and dragging, almost painful to watch. forcing myself to continue watching, and 30mins before the movie ended, everything started to make sense. i regret watching this movie. a total waste of time.definitely not a thriller, more to a drama, with minimal dialogues and i was left wondering why why why, yep until the last 30mins of the movie.
8 out of 18 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
9/10
Traumatic, but in a good way
markedcollins27 January 2015
Film's that investigate the underbelly of society are not unusual, however ones that leave an indelible mark upon the viewer are. Miss Violence is one of those films. It's not an easy watch, and it does use cinematic devices that were pioneered by other directors, but this is a truly challenging film that immerses the viewer in a world that we can't help but be both intrigued and repelled by.

Miss Violence distances itself from more run-of-the-mill offerings in this genre, delivering an all too believable world with strong acting performances, ominous silences, and skillful use of the more mundane aspects of domestic life that combine to leave the viewer wanting to know what happens after the titles roll.
7 out of 16 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
The day I hated the beach and ice creams
ahmedrockinblues15 February 2019
This movie is disturbing and unsettling , especially if you are a parent.For me this movie belongs to the horror genre.The music less 2 hours are filled with magnificent performances.A very predictable climax has been turned into something everlasting by the talented caste.
2 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
4/10
The Banality of Evil
billcr1226 July 2014
This is my second venture into Greek cinema; the first being Dogtooth. Is everyone in that country insane? The concepts are similar in both films which share a controlling father in the lead. This time around, the dad is dancing with his eleven year-old granddaughter when she shortly makes an unexpected and abrupt exit. For the following ninety six minutes we are subjected to four adults and four children behaving very strangely. There is not one light moment and we are witness to an extremely sexually repulsive scene involving a girl and men who are not interested in a loving relationship. The acting is fine, but the actors spend every moment brooding. There is no reason on earth to sit through this tortuous movie.
16 out of 53 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
8/10
The concealment of human depravity
eagandersongil14 September 2017
"Miss Violence" uses a subtlety and subtlety to treat and expose a perverse theme that opposes human nature, or does it not? this is the theme reflected in the film - although not to the depth we would like - another Greek film that exposes human nature, such as the great "Canine Tooth" or "The Boy Who Eats Alpiste", this new wave in Greek cinema that maybe has been rocked by its economic crises that makes the filmmakers seek inspiration in their own humanity. The script of miss violence keeps the revelation to the last act, and is giving clues in the first two playing with the viewer, instigating it, and that works in some way, because we are looking for clues and solutions, and when we think that an explanation is correct , the director integrates some point in the film that leaves us even more shaken and confused. But the script is intelligent, linear, working with few nuclei and practically a scenario he manages to maintain a high level of psychological suspense. In addition to child abuse, hostility and domestic violence, the film also deals with the loss and prohibition of mourning, it always has that story "So and so do not want you to cry at your funeral" and it is with this dilemma that our characters are not advised to follow, and yes, thank you. The film has a camera that films scene against scene all the time, leaving the camera always completely impartial, as in other films already mentioned, the director does not want to create a villain, he just wants to show what is happening, who chooses the villains are us, the movie also has a good set up even with its slow tempo and a great use of soundtrack. in addition to their range of actors, who are completely incredible, even the younger actors retain a remarkable sadness and melancholy, Alexandros Avranas director of the long, makes his first direction with the right foot and shows that he has talent. Finally, "Miss Violence" really is not a movie for any person, it takes a steel stomach, not for nojeira or gore, but for the context and subcontext present and operant in the work.
4 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
7/10
A painful tale about family morals in Greek society
hassanhejaili7 October 2015
Warning: Spoilers
Alexander Avranas's Miss Violence has a realistic point of view that could define various understanding of violence. Does the society make you violent? Or is violence just an essential part of the human nature?

The film is about a family struggle. Clearly, they have many economic issues. The opening scene is remarkable. It's an event that the story builds up from. The opening sequence shows a birthday family party for an 11-years-old girl. It shows a happy family until the record player starts playing a happy song by Leonard Cohen called "Dance Me to the End of Love". With the peaceful sound of the music, the birthday girl commits suicide. She jumps from the balcony. Since then the story gets dark and darker.

The main character of the story is the father/grandfather who represents masculinity. Thus He is in a total control of the family. The first half of the film shows him as responsible father dealing with a great tragedy, the death of his granddaughter who we don't know who her father was. A complete disaster happened as we find out that he is sexually abusing his other granddaughter as well as selling her out for strangers as prostitute. The film explores different kinds of soft and extreme violence as hitting kids in the face, beating, yelling, screaming, raping, killing, and little blood. The violence doesn't come out as an enjoyment like many of the killing in Hollywood movies instead it's just an acceptable family behavior.

Finally, as the grandmother puts an end for the husband extreme abuse. We don't really know if she killed him or did she cut off his…. Therefore, this movie would be better if we became aware of what happened at the end. When you close a movie like that you will have defiantly different reactions. Mine was like I really wanted to see what happened to him. I wanted to see every members of the family dancing around his dead body as a sign of the end of a muscular ignorant **shole control….

I give it 7 out of 10. It's worth watching with much respect for Greece cinema specially the great long-live director Theo Angelopoulos
4 out of 9 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
1/10
Worst film every.
theosanto7 June 2016
The purpose of this film was to shock just for the sake of it. This is not independent cinema, this is pure sickness. We need to move away from the sick minded people and the movies that reproduce sickness so they can be named ''independent'', ''shocking'' , ''contemporary'' etc. Every useless director in Greece is trying to imitate previous successes (dogtooth) and make a name, but apparently they cannot realize the limits. Or are they sick too? The worst part of the movie was the attempted connection of these disgusting actions with the financial crisis (the low wage that that the grandpa was offered). Don't watch it.
13 out of 44 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
It hit me real bad
minerva-88-894809 November 2014
Warning: Spoilers
This movie is unusual in every bit. It's well done. Excellent. Such a terrible topic. I hate movies telling stories of abuse, !SPOILER coming!: especially with children....I am totally moved and creeped out to the core. In my opinion, the director, the writers, the actors and cameramen are geniuses!!! The play between actors and camera....pure horror at times. I felt hit hard by their glances. This IS a horror film - put aside slayer movies, they feel like a birthday party in comparison. This is a horror movie.

WOW! I never knew, Greece had such impressive cinema!! I am flabbergasted!!! I became a fan of Greece cinema, this instance. Though, I dearly hope, their topics aren't all that....intense. I will check that out.

I adored, that the makers could show how dreadful such a life can be by not having any distraction whatsoever. The title is so profound and its meaning develops within the movie....And it adds up to a history of inhuman behaviour.

The ending. I so wished for that kind of ending. I am not saying how it went: watch it. Force yourself to the end. It's not enjoyable, no way. It's a task. Your weekend or evening will be ruined, for sure. But I think it's an artsy movie. No expose to ridicule.

Holy cow, I haven't expected this story line. Even though I lead a complicated life, I feel very very blissful just now. There is no need for complains, I had it easy, considering that movie, considering these girls.... I like this movie making me reflect on bliss.

Chapeaux to the makers!
6 out of 17 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
4/10
Boring
maryfeather806 June 2014
i am from Greece so i should say that this movie is a masterpiece and all that usual stuff almost everybody said about this movie..well i am from the few that didn't like it one bit..The actors played awful and fake..i mean what family acts this way??They all acted like they were hypnotized but in a bad bad way,i found the whole movie slow and boring and i don't recommend it to anyone..i wonder why they all say this is one of the best movies around..that is my honest opinion..There are tons of movies way better than this slow movie!Maybe Dog tooth was better but even that movie didn't said much to me and to a lot of people i know.I think that these kind of movies are not for all the people out there..anyway these kind of movies always go at the festivals and i am sure that i am not a fan of all these movies,again i speak for my self!
14 out of 73 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
10/10
Uncovering the darkest corners of the human psyche
munagenikis1 February 2019
Brilliantly made, technically speaking, and brave at heart as this movie doesn't shy away from exposing one of the deepest darkest secrets of every living society, that of abuse of make privillage and power. Although the suicide of the 11 yr old girl leads most to guess correctly what the underlying cause is, the director's patient unveiling of the hum drum of the family's daily life with its emotional suppression and passive aggressive undertones is a real coup because it gives a full flavour of how life is like for those overtly and covertly subdued by the male head of the family and its sole bread winner. The director's portrayal of abuse is almost neutral leaving the audience to disect why do these things still happen in this day and age, whose responsibility is it to expose it, why do women put up with it.... which is brilliant because the mind truly boggles and any ready answers would've been a cheap shot. I wish more directors woukd have the courage to expose the darkness in our midst fearlessly like this because that's what keeps the soul alive and thriving.
2 out of 5 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
4/10
Welcome to Greece !
raptandy4 August 2014
Warning: Spoilers
The main point of focus in this Greek film is that we got to start f******* our kids in order to get out of the euro crisis. Well, if it's intended as a joke, it's a very thin one, thanks to the stiff performances and the director's lack of personal style. From start 'till end, this film screams 'Dogtooth!' and 'Haneke!' It is also very frustrating that this film never becomes as shocking as it wants to be, and the interior spaces are not well realized. There are some very boring close-ups of household objects. It seems that at times, the director didn't know where to point his camera. Still, its not exactly a bad movie. There are some great bizarre moments like a kid doing a sexy dance in front of a glowing television screen that almost make this film worth while. There are also some very promising actors that show great potential(such as the girl that looks like the Harry Potter chick).
8 out of 48 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
5/10
Well.. it really just depends
rodriguezcrystal-0295419 September 2018
Warning: Spoilers
The film is very drab, the hole film is rather melancholy and the colors make it severely depressing. If you can handle seeing that and if you are not triggered by vivid raping scenes then this would be alright for you.
1 out of 3 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink
2/10
Spoilers: Should be banned. Who writes and directs something like this? Who wants to act in it????
shaneakk20 January 2019
Warning: Spoilers
Free on Amazon prime....The acting was believable. The subject matter is appalling. The film starts with an 11 year olds suicide. Most of the film has you trying to piece together who was related to who. We spent most of the film hoping that it was too obvious to be what it looked like. Then near the end of the film you are hit with the sick reality. A sickening scene of a child being rented out to be raped by grown men, including her father. This was a family tradition in this big family of mentally scarred and unstable women/female children highly controlled by a pervert. The children were both the mans children and Grand children at the same time. It really bothered my wife and I so much that we had to watch something shallow and light before we went to bed. There is never a need to try to shock using this perverse and sickening type of film. What is wrong with these film makers? It is highly perverted and so unnecessary. Wish we hadn't watched this.
1 out of 8 found this helpful. Was this review helpful? Sign in to vote.
Permalink

See also

Awards | FAQ | User Ratings | External Reviews | Metacritic Reviews


Recently Viewed