Limbo

What a fucking great movie! I laughed until my vision greyed. My favourite film of the festival so far. I highly recommend you take the chance to see this.

Just perfect. The dry, dead-pan comedy is just dead on, combining the asylum process’s Kafkaesque absurdity with the dark Scottish sense of humour. At one point the main character and all his mates are gathered around the only phone box on the island, everybody wearing those shit clear plastic ponchos while smoking a fag, and his mate, looking down at his mobile, is like, “There was a better signal in the middle of the Mediterranean.” There is nothing more Scottish than complaining about Scotland. Staying here and hating it is all there is to it.

Even the wee neds doing donuts on the beach, rock up to him and go, “Don’t blow up shite or rape anyone, right? Right, you want a lift back up to town pal?” As my pal once said, Scotland: Simultaneously the angriest and friendliest place.

Limbo is about Omar, a Syrian refugee and musician, parked on a Scottish island while awaiting the decision on his asylum application. Limbo describes the state of his fate, this hanging in the balance, neither one thing nor the other, but it also describes this place, this spit of land in the middle of buttfuck nowhere. Not terrible, but not great, it has this timeless quality in a way that seems to be both interminable and yet somehow also awe-inspiring. The rugged landscape, the raging sea, the mercurial sky. Limbo is also the state in which Omar finds his identity. Back home he was a well respected musician, here he is no one, and he cannot yet move on to build a new life, a new identity. At the same time, he is calling home to his parents, who are living as refugees in Turkey, and much is made of the bad blood between him and his brother, who has stayed in Syria to fight for the people. The brothers don’t speak, and yet his brother may be killed in the fighting at any time, and Omar may be deported to God knows what without warning. You’d think that would be enough to make them try to make peace, but their issues remain unresolved, as though ignoring it and suspending its discussion is preferable than a confrontation to bring it to its conclusion.

Every shot in this movie, every beat of silence and sound, every performance is just perfection. Loved every minute of it. Go see.