Set in Communist Czechoslovakia, Juraj Nvota’s period piece tells the story of Peter, a kind-hearted boy whose parents escaped the regime and moved to Austria when he was a toddler. Forced to live with his grandparents in a village on the border, life for all is heavily monitored by army personnel. When Peter is the last to learn that his parents have a son abroad, he becomes confused about his place in the family. He is later faced with some big decisions about the trajectory of his future.
While Hostage offers some insight into how children are affected by political systems that they can’t quite grasp, too many subplots amount to a whole lot of nothing.
At 95 minutes in length, it all drags on for much longer than it needs to. Some very talented young actors are this film’s only redeeming quality.
Sunday at the Cinematheque (November 29) .