The Door

Synopsis: A novelist forms a strange bond with her eccentric maid that will have a lasting effect on both women.
Genre: Drama
Director(s): István Szabó
Production: FilmArt Kft.
  2 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
97 min

Budapest, 1960's

Good morning!

Good morning!

I'd like to ask your help.

My husband and I live just opposite,

we moved here a few days ago.

Our former flat was smaller,

so I could take care of it myself.

But now I would just like to write.

- What do you write?

- Novels.

Up till now I taught.

Well, if you can find someone to give me

references to what sort people you are

I might consider it.

I'm busy right now.

I don't do washing for anyone,

you know.

Good day!

I could start work for you tomorrow.


Come in!


Emerenc Szereds.

Pleased to meet you. Szabados.

- You're from Hajdusg too, aren't you?

- How did you know that?

Your ass.

My father spoke like that.

Yes, well I'm from the Great Plains,

from Csabadul.

I'm from the Great Plains too.

And how much would you like

for your services, Emerenc?

Well, I tell you at the end of the week,

when I know how much work there is to do.

I will go now.

I wish the master good evening!

- Master?

- Master.

...when she wandered around the house,

nervous and without appetite...

they avoided her

so as not to disturb her.

- What's she doing at this time of night?

- She brought the carpet back.

- Now?

- When she has the time.

But now she's washing up!

- She probably saw the dishes from supper.

- You see!

- Oh, you want me to be ashamed of myself?

- At the least!

Oh, the windows!

What's wrong with her?

She's terrified of the storm.

There's probably a reason.


Could you hurry, please, because I must go

and I want to ask you to do something for me.

Don't you go disturbing me after hours,

I'm not paid for that!

I wanted to ask you whether you could

accept a parcel for me

because I must go to

the police station.

Ever since we've lived here

- about 20 years now

Emerenc has never let

anyone into her home.

She guards her cat inside.

We hear meowing occasionally.

But who knows what else

she's got to guard beside the cat.

She even receives her own relatives

and her colonel friend on the porch


winter and summer.

Please sit down, wait here.

Those, who are waiting for address registration,

please, proceed to window no. 3.

- We haven't met yet, madam. Bthorffy.

- Szabados.

Please, come into my office.

Are you getting along with Emerenc?


She's not an easy person.

She has her whims.

None of us is easy.

When I was just a Lieutenant,

we opened a special file on Emerenc

because we got so many letters about her.

Killing Jews and robbing them. What she

actually did makes very little difference.

One said she was an American agent, secretly

trying to over through the peoples democracy

details included

awful accusations against her.

One said she is hiding treasures

You don't have to be afraid of Emerenc.

At first I was very scared of her.

Only Emrenc is not scared of anyone.

She's weathered a few storms.

Emerenc would have done anything

for her first cat.

And that tomcat

was a great hunter!

A pigeon breeder - a very decent man

by the way - used to live here...


He hung that cat by a wire

from Emerenc's door handle.

I saw it myself.

Because the cat killed his pigeons

one by one.

That's not true.

...Her nights were never undisturbed...

...but in summer she often

did not sleep at all.

She could not bear the heat.

Her husband, mother-in-law

and the servants took it for granted...

...they let her sleep in the daytime as long

as she wanted and whenever she felt like it...

Hello, darling!

...And when she wandered

around the house, nervous...

What a lovely music.

Do you know what I'd like,

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István Szabó

István Szabó (Hungarian: [ˈsɒboː ˈiʃtvaːn]; born February 18, 1938) is a Hungarian film director, screenwriter, and opera director. Szabó is the most internationally famous Hungarian filmmaker since the late 1960s. Working in the tradition of European auteurism, he has made films that represent many of the political and psychological conflicts of Central Europe’s recent history, as well as of his own personal history. He made his first short film in 1959 as a student at the Hungarian Academy of Theatrical and Cinematic Arts, and his first feature film in 1964. He achieved his greatest international success with Mephisto (1981), which won the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Since then, most of Szabó's films have been international co-productions filmed in a variety of languages and European locations. He has continued to make some films in Hungarian, however, and even in his international co-productions, he often films in Hungary and uses Hungarian talent. Szabó became involved in a national controversy in 2006 when the Hungarian newspaper Life and Literature revealed that he had been an informant of the Communist regime’s secret police. more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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    "The Door" STANDS4 LLC, 2021. Web. 17 May 2021. <>.

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