Moscow, Belgium (2008)

This Flemish movie is an improbable, funny, telling movie.  Barbara Sarafian plays Matty, a rather dowdy, phlegmatic, forty-something mother of three whose art teacher husband Werner has left her for one of his students some five and a half months before. She works in a post office, takes care of the kids and – when we meet her first – is trudging half heartedly around the local megastore buying groceries. Matty is more dead than alive. Exiting the car park, she reverses into the truck of Johnny (Jurgen Delnaet) a red haired, alcoholic but quite cute truck driver some ten years her junior, and a sharp exchange of views ensues about fault and blame, which ends abruptly with the arrival of the traffic police, called by Matty. It seems Johnny has a record.

The next day he turns up at her apartment to fix her damaged trunk and he asks her out for a drink. Johnny is intrigued by Matty, but she is less than enamoured of him. All she wants – she thinks – is her old life back; her husband home, her kids behaving and everything ordered and where it should be. Her coworker at the post office has assured her that sexual passion only lasts six months, so Werner will be back soon. But Johnny is persistent and Werner is flaky.  On the other hand, Johnny lives in his truck and Werner is a professor.  What trumps what?

Well, in the end, Matty has quite the whirl with Johnny.  This is another tellin gof the story of just how fragile marriage and love can be, and what happens when you submit to sexual desires that fall outside the boundaries of that relationship.  It is not that it is bad, it is that it is confusing, and all the previous rules no longer apply.  We are ill equipped to deal with those emotions, it turns out, even as we get older.


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