Monday, November 1, 2010

The Romanian New Wave

Since the beginning of the Twenty-First Century, there has been a sudden barrage of critically acclaimed films of Romanian origin.  The first announcement that Romanian cinema had arrived on the international stage was in 2004, where Trafic directed by Catalin Mitulescu won the award for best short film at the Cannes film festival.  Since then, five other Romanian films have taken home a prize from Cannes, including 2007's Palme d'Or winner 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days.  A spectacular output from a country not historically known for its film industry. 

4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days (2007)
Most of the films of the Romanian New Wave are set during the 1980's under Ceausescu's communist rule.  A tumultuous time in Romanian history with life under a police state and an economy in shambles from years of disastrous financial policies.  A common theme can be seen dealing with the struggles and adaptation of life under the regime of a dictator.

The Death of Mr. Lazarescu (2005)
Stylistically these films are quite similar, often minimalist and employing long stationary takes with available lighting which gives a realistic feel to them.  The stories are also quite minimalist, often just giving us a glimpse into a specific event in a character's life.

12:08 East Of Bucharest (2006)
Here at Bonjour Tristesse, we will be showcasing the films of this ongoing wave of cinema. 

The Films of the Romanian New Wave

The Other Irene / Cealalta Irina (2009)Andrei Gruzsniczki
Hooked / Pescuit sportiv (2009)Adrian Sitaru
First of All, Felicia / Felicia, înainte de toate (2009)Melissa de Raaf, Razvan Radulescu
Francesca (2009)Bobby Paunescu
Medal of Honor / Medalia de onoare (2009)Calin Peter Netzer
Outbound / Periferic (2010)Bogdan George Apetri
Portrait of the Fighter as a Young Man / Portretul luptatorului la tinerete (2010)Constantin Popescu
Best Intentions / Din dragoste cu cele mai bune intentii (2011)Adrian Sitaru
Child's Pose / Pozitia Copilului (2013)Calin Peter Netzer