In the final days of World War 2, a young Hungarian is making his way home, through countryside full of the debris of war, when he is captured and imprisoned by Russians. Left in the custody of a young Russian soldier, the two youths form a friendship in spite of not speaking each other's language. The Hungarian's attempts to continue his journey homeward provide the framework for this powerful film, considered Miklos Jancso's first masterpiece. Jancso's consistent vision - the psychological presence of landscape, the randomness of violence, the arbitrary nature of power - is first evident in this poetic, evocative and deeply personal work from one of cinema's most acclaimed filmmakers.
This subtitled B&W film depicts the Hungarian war with the Cossacks. There is a central character whose journey is followed as he is captured and released and runs and hides. It is difficult to know who is from which faction and why they seem indifferent to his freedom. Not a captivating or interesting account. The cinematography is rather beautiful but not enough to recommend the film.