It takes quite a story to eclipse the events of World War II. But Czech director Ondrej Trojan's romantic tale, based on actual episodes described in an autobiographical novella, does just that. When a nurse with the resistance (Ana Geislerova) flees Prague with former patient (Gyorgy Cserhalmi) to his rural village of Zelary, she gets tangled in a complicated affair.
To trip up gossiping neighbors, she changes her name and marries Cserhalmi. The convenience grows into love, but only after much struggle and some pretty close calls. Beyond the compelling centerpiece, the peripheral stories take hold--of the wise old healer, the precocious little girl, the abandoned orphan boy and the town's abusive drunks. The film's superior acting makes every character believable, and Trojan's understated approach only furthers our involvement. Did we mention the scenery? Simply stunning.