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Cherry Pop

'The Good Postman'
(Ivan Fransunov, Angela Jekova, Vangel Jekov, et al / DVD / NR / (2016) 2018 / Film Rise - MVD Visual)

Overview: Postman Ivan has a new political vision: he decides to run for mayor in order to bring his dying village to life by welcoming refugees. His opponents are only interested in closing their eyes to the refugees, shutting the border and reintroducing communism.

While on the campaign trail -- his delivery route -- Ivan learns that good intentions are not enough, and that even the smallest deeds matter.

DVD Verdict: A Bulgarian film with English subtitles, 'The Good Postman' is a 2016 documentary directed by Tonislav Hristov which offers a tragicomic perspective on the 'refugee crisis' of 2015 from a small Bulgarian village located near the Turkish border.

The village has suffered decades of economic and demographic decline. The handful of remaining residents observe refugee families from Syria and elsewhere as they cross the border, and ponder inviting them to settle in the vacant village houses.

This proposal, advocated by the village postman and main protagonist Ivan, polarizes opinions and brings into focus the local people's own fears, hopes and disappointments.

With selfishness and meanness bombarding us in media, it is reassuring to be reminded that magnanimity always acts as a counterbalance. This Bulgarian gem's title is well chosen. The postman is a good man. As one of his poverty-stricken neighbors observes, the measure of a man is his goodness. It is also fitting measure of this movie.

It should also be known that although the film uses a semi-fictionalized plot, all characters portray themselves in a narrative which closely follows real events which unfolded in Bulgaria during 2014 and 2015.

'The Good Postman' premiered in 2016 at Amsterdamís International Documentary Film Festival, where it was nominated for Best Feature-Length Documentary, before screening at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival. This is a Widescreen Presentation (1:85.1) enhanced for 16x9 TVs.