Pete’s Peek | There’s more than Tears for Sale in the stunning Serbian fantasy

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What would you get if you combined the romance of Jean-Pierre Jeunet’s Amélie with Terry Gilliam’s surreal imagination and the dark fairy tale intrigue of Guillermo del Toro’s Pan Labyrinth? The answer is Tears for the Sale.

This dazzling debut feature from Serbian director Uros Stojanovic, has it all – magic, darkness, sex and death – as it unveils its demented adult fairy tale. Following years of warfare, a remote village in 1920s Serbia has found itself without any menfolk. After accidentally killing the last man standing, two sisters are charged with bringing back a virile man in just three days or find themselves cursed forever.

Their quest sees them encounter two entertainers, a slick dance-hall dandy known as the Charleston King and a human cannonball circus artiste. But when the sisters fall in love with the men, they must make the awkward decision of taking the men back to their village and lose them forever, or run away and renege on their promise…

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Furiously visual on every scale – from the costumes to the brilliantly conceived CGI photography – Tears for Sale plays fast and furious with its fantastic tale, while the Serbian language is pure poetry on the ears. Uros Stojanovic is definitely a director we’ll be seeing a lot more of.

Just watch your step in the vineyard. It could be your last.

Released 20 September

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