Note: Click the image below to view full poster

Whenever your small-ish film is getting ready to enter a big, congested film festival, you need to get creative in order to get the word out there -- which is exactly what the folks behind the indie flick Kirot did with this fantastical upside down/sideways poster featuring a gun-toting Olga Kurylenko, who I'm sure you remember as the gal in both Quantum of Solace and Max Payne. Cinematical has received this exclusive poster ahead of the film's premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival this coming Sunday.

The Israel-France-USA co-production was directed by Danny Lerner (Frozen Days) and stars Kurylenko as a woman who desperately wants to reunite with the daughter she left back home in Russia, though at the moment she's busy tending to her job as an assassin involved against her will with the local sex-traffic mafia. Already I'm diggin' the Nikita vibe to it, and it'll be nice to see Kurylenko stretch her legs a bit in a lead role without having to play second fiddle to some male action hero. I posted the TIFF synopsis after the jump for those interested in the entire set-up, but whatever you do, scope out the poster below -- it's pretty neat.


Danny Lerner's acclaimed 2005 film, Frozen Days, saw a lonely woman's blind date derailed by a suicide bombing. With his most recent film, Kirot, the director again brings psychological complexity and socio-political commentary to essential elements of a thriller plot. This time, he takes on two tried-and-true archetypes: the assassin with one last job to complete, and the prostitute with the heart of gold.

The Hebrew word kirot translates to "walls," and this metaphor informs the entire film. Galia (Olga Kurylenko of Quantum of Solace) longs to escape her life as a Tel Aviv sex worker and reunite with the young daughter she left behind in Ukraine. With the promise of cash and the return of her passport, she is enlisted to commit murders for Tel Aviv heavies Ronnie and Michel.

Across the hall lives Elinor (Ninet Tayeb), a grocery-store clerk and battered wife who dreams of fleeing her abusive husband. After witnessing one of their domestic altercations, Galia is again acquainted with her shamefaced neighbour at the cash register. The two forge a friendship when Elinor tries to teach Galia to curse in Hebrew. For a few precious hours, the two women forget their exploiters.

Lerner's film brings a fresh perspective to the face of urbanity in Tel Aviv film. Galia and Elinor's chockablock apartments belie the favoured image of the city's UNESCO-recognized Bauhaus architecture. Nothing here is spacious, airy or bright. As she imagines escaping Tel Aviv, Galia winds up creating an ever-more elaborate mural on one of her walls, illustrating the vast Ukrainian steppes she revisits in dreams.

It's not long since Lerner was a film student at Tel Aviv University, but in just two feature films, he has already established himself as one of the city's strongest directors. Even better, with his integration of genre pleasures and art-house ambition, he is reinventing how Tel Aviv looks on screen.