Sabina K. | Chicago Reader

Sabina K.

126 minutes 2015

The title character of this hokey Bosnian drama is not the dauntless heroine that feminism and social progress have made a cinematic standard-bearer but a passive, pathetic victim who implodes without a man to fulfill her. Sabina (Alena Dzebo), a Muslim divorcee and mother of two small children, plans to marry a Catholic (Alban Ukaj) with whom she served during the Balkan conflict, despite their parents' disapproval. But when her seemingly adoring fiancé fails to show up for the nuptials, she goes into a tailspin so histrionic it borders on the comical. A title reports that this was "inspired by a true story," but nothing interesting or empowering comes of it. Instead writer-director Cristóbal Krusen delivers an overlong, overwrought morality play with a tacked-on religious coda in which his weak-willed protagonist replaces a man's love with that of Jesus Christ. In Bosnian with subtitles.

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