My 20th Century
Conventional storytelling is gleefully cast aside in Hungarian female director Ildikó Enyedi’s still-stunning debut. It’s 1880. Thomas Edison publicly introduces the electric light bulb. At this exact moment, identical twins Dora and Lili are born in Budapest. Fast-forward to 1900. Dora and Lili have long been separated. Dora’s now a clever hustler of men and money. Lili’s become a bomb-throwing anarchist. Delightful diversions abound. A professor delivers a crackpot speech about women having ‘no logic’. Celestial voices comment on events below. Mystery man Z falls for both sisters. A chimpanzee tells us how he was captured. This free-form essay on feminism, fate, desire and modernity is a charmer from fade-in to fade-out.
A beautifully assembled collection of black and white images, it bounds along with the kind of unhampered, lively confidence only an impassioned novice could pull off. – Desson Howe, The Washington Post