“Sweetly told, fresh and engaging. The climax is unexpectedly dramatic and packed with genuine tension”
It’s 1953 and Endel (Mart Avandi) is on the run. With his wartime affiliations catching up with him, he eludes the secret police in Leningrad and flees to a remote village in Soviet-occupied Estonia. He tries to keep a low profile by taking a job as a sports instructor at the local school where his efforts are quickly undermined by a lack of resources. A skilled fencer, Endel manages to unearth some neglected foils in the gym and starts a fencing club for the children, who are eager to learn. The rapport he builds with his young students raises the ire of the party-loyalist school principal, suspicious of Endel’s past. Beautifully acted and skilfully directed, The Fencer is a deeply affecting and memorable (true) story of compassion, sacrifice and courage against the odds.