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Just Another Confused Elephant...
© Giorgos Panagiotakis
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The title’s initials are an abbreviation of these exact words. A description of the development of unanticipated behavior, by elephants that were orphans in their youth.
Despite that, J.A.C.E. in this movie by Menelaos Karamaghiolis is not an elephant. He is a boy that was born in violence and lives in the mercy of a criminal gang that has absolutely no moral barriers. His parents are murdered and he is kidnapped from the small Albanian village where he was born, in order to work in the streets. He ends up in a juvenile institution, ultimately leaving after losing one of his kidneys and finding shelter near a drag queen (one of the “father figures” that take him under their wings, along with an elephant trainer and a cop, who struggles alone in a completely corrupt police department).
There seems to be no end in the suffering of J.A.C.E. as the movie progresses. His troubles become more and more complex, sometimes reminding those of Oliver Twist or those of “Old Boy’s” main character. His defense against all these seems to be his silence... His denial to communicate.
In contradiction to its main character, the movie “talks” a lot. Passionate and prolific, but losing parcity, Karamaghiolis has a rare visual-molding ability, that is in a way canceled (sadly) by the lack of a “borderline” and his intention to “talk about everything”. What stays with the viewer after the movie ends, is the exceptional development of the story in the first minutes of the film, and some impressively structured scenes. The minimal and solid performance by the lead actor Alban Ukaj, along with strong acting by some of the many participants (we distinguished Ieronymos Kaletsanos  and Kora Karvouni ) leave a positive impression.

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  Stefania Goulioti
  Giorgos Frentzos
  Menelaos Karamaghiolis
  Kora Karvouni
  Alban Ukaj
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