Dreams still remain one of the most mysterious aspects of sentient life. There’s a whole section of literature purely concerned with trying to decode them. We’ll probably never know if androids dream of electric sheep and the human brain still remains a puzzle. If there’s a meaning behind our dreams and nightmares then we’ve yet to discover the key. In On Body and Soul, director Ildikó Enyedi’s first film for eighteen years, she uses the premise of shared dreams to drive a charming love story.
For Endre (Géza Morcsányi), the boss in a slaughterhouse, a sex life is something that’s firmly in his past. However, when María (Alexandra Borbély), the new quality inspector is employed at the factory, he’s intrigued. After a theft from the office, a therapist is called in to unmask the culprit. She discovers that in their dreams at night they meet as deer in a forest. They try and recapture this romance in real life, but a combination of María’s social awkwardness and the older Endre’s lack of self-confidence keep getting in the way.
On Body and Soul is a beautifully judged, brilliantly acted and painstakingly constructed treatise on love. Ildikó Enyedi creates a world of poetic whimsy mixed with flashes of blunt realism. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a better acting performance this year than that of Alexandra Borbély. She’s absolutely radiant and plays the role perfectly. On Body and Soul is a lyrical love story which feels both magical and strangely real.
On Body and Soul is out in cinemas from Friday.