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KNIGHT WITHOUT ARMOUR

Bulgaria, 1966 (MIFF 1967, Programme 32)

Director: Borislav Sharaliev

Although the central character of Knight Without Armour is a child, as we follow his adventures, we also learn much about the adults surrounding him.

Vanio's world is presented in a collection of episodes: the first ride in the newly acquired car; a fight on the street; shadowing a "spy"; a day with the favourite uncle. The boy, who is inspired by the idea of chivalry absorbed from his reading about Don Quixote and D'Artagnan, gradually discovers that championing the causes of the weak, or following the just path, is not always the way of adults.

The story thus makes oblique comment on a range of social problems, such as the indifference of bureaucrats, harsh parental behaviour, or the idolising of cars.

Oleg Korachev, an exuberant little extrovert, is used to maximum effect by the director in a charming and utterly unselfconscious portrayal of the irrepressible Vanio.

Second Prize, Venice Festival.

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