Movie Review: A Perfect Day (2015)

Starring: Benicio Del Toro, Tim Robbins and Olga Kurylenko

Directed by: Fernando Leon de Aranoa

A small group of aid workers must try and work together without causing any further problems during the end stages of the Bosnian war.

Benicio Del Toro has a tremendous ability to play hard, gritty characters and A Perfect Day is no different. He produces a masterful performance as he plays aid worker Mambru, who is in Bosnia trying to help the people who need it the most. He is in charge of a small aid team which consists of himself, Sophie, B and a local man to help with translating called Damir. Mambru and his team are trying to remove a dead body that has been dumped in a well and which is the local people’s on water source before it contaminates the water beyond purification repair. With constant hurdles put in their way that thy must cross it’s the true toll of war that is most haunting for so many that they must find ways to ease their pain.

In addition to Del Toro being great he was supported by a stellar cast that really gelled well together and made the movie enjoyable to watch. Tim Robbins as B was definitely the highlight of the movie as he was the funny man within the team and was the source for many laughs as well as displaying the humanity of an aid worker. There were two Bosnian actors which were terrific in this movie especially Eldar Residovic who played Nikola, a young Bosnian boy that Mambru takes a shine to as he tries to help him. For a young boy with no acting experience (according to IMDb) he was so great to watch and was very convincing in his role while also showing that the war affected everybody irrespective of age. The second Bosnian actor was Fedja Stukan who played the aid workers local translator. He was wonderful as he plays a man severely affected by the Bosnian war and just wanted to do his part in helping the country recover from such an atrocity.

A Perfect Day also benefitted from great use of cinematography and the soundtrack included some really great songs that suited the tone of the movie. The pacing of the movie was ideal for the story that was being told and the director really knew how to get the best out of his surroundings. While this movie managed to do a lot of things right there were a few parts that I didn’t particular like. The involvement of Olga Kurylenko as Katya seemed rather pointless. While she acted reasonably well, the character itself served no real purpose for me other than to provide a small insight to Mambru’s past, which I’m sure there were other ways to portray without the need of an additional character. Also, while I enjoyed a lot of the comedy that was used within the movie, especially from Tim Robbins, at times I felt it took the seriousness away from the situation. Bosnia was ravaged by war and filled with hate and I feel a more dramatic approach would’ve served better but I suppose it was just the way the aid workers dealt with the situation they found themselves in, there were positives and negatives that could be drawn from it.

Overall, a very well paced movie that had a lot of good acting involved. An all round enjoyable watch which I would recommend to anybody that enjoys war based dramas.

7/10

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