Revanche (Unrated) ***


A story of revenge also has its own rewards.

Johannes Krisch and Irina Potapenko star in Revanche.

By Colin Covert, Minneapolis Star Tribune

''If you plan revenge, dig two graves,'' the saying goes. This cool, tense Austrian thriller, a 2009 Oscar nominee for best foreign film, follows a Ukrainian hooker and her petty criminal boyfriend as they try to escape their dead-end lives.

Freedom seems to be just one small-town bank job away, until a local policeman wanders across their path. The would-be robber finds a home near the rural cop and his lonely wife, and a psychological cat-and-mouse game of exquisite tension pulls them into a dangerous triangle.

The film opens as a crime melodrama, writhes through surprising twists and turns and deepens into a reflection on guilt and revenge.

The movie digs deep into its characters' emotions, with enough imagination to show us a policeman drowning in grief over an accidental shooting and a criminal who vents his aggression by creating life rather than causing death.

Cast: Johannes Krisch, Irina Potapenko, Andreas Lust, Ursula Strauss.

Director/screenwriter: Gotz Spielmann.

Producers: Sandra Bohle, Mathias Forberg, Gotz Spielmann, Heinz Stussak.

Running time: 121 minutes. In German and Russian with English subtitles. Playing in Miami-Dade only: Cosford.

Speak Up!