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Irina Palm

Sam Garbarski
Belgium, Luxembourg, UK, Germany, France 2007 / 103’

Rock legend Marianne Faithfull plays Maggie, a 50-year-old widow from a small town close to London, whose beloved grandson becomes fatally ill. His only chance is an expensive treatment in Australia and his parents can't afford it (...). This is why Maggie takes a well-paid job in a sex-club in London, masturbating customers in a special cabin to allow both parties to remain anonymous.

Irina Palm arises from the same tradition of the British cinema as The Full Monty or Calendar Girls - a tragicomedy about selling one's own body. However, regardless of other differences, this idea is much more risky in the moral sense (not only because of male strip-tease or naked photos but also because of the type of prostitution itself) and on the other hand - much more is at stake: a child's life. This could be disgusting or obscene, but the Belgian director managed to capture the perfect tone, harmonising humour and sentimentalism.

Paweł Mossakowski, Gazeta Wyborcza

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