6.9/10
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11 user 39 critic

Rumba (2008)

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Teachers in a rural school, happy couple Fiona and Dom have a common passion: Latin Dancing. One night, after a glorious dance competition, they have a car accident and see their lives turn... See full summary »
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1 win & 1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Dom
Fiona Gordon ...
Fiona
Philippe Martz ...
Gérard
...
Le voleur de pain au chocolat
Clément Morel ...
Eliot
Thérèse Fisher ...
L'infirmière
Claire Dubien ...
La boulangère
Tatiana Gueroult ...
La petite fille de la plage
Michel Valognes ...
Le conducteur de bus
...
Le piéton
Louis Lecouvreur ...
Le portier
Stéphane Balls ...
Le patron du bar
Odile de Coligny ...
Une institutrice
Richard Carpentier ...
Instituteur
Pascal Vénara ...
Instituteur
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Storyline

Teachers in a rural school, happy couple Fiona and Dom have a common passion: Latin Dancing. One night, after a glorious dance competition, they have a car accident and see their lives turn upside down. Rumba or how optimism and humour can overcome fatality! Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy

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Language:

Release Date:

10 September 2008 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Rumba!  »

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Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Award: sélectionné pour le Festival de Cannes 2008 (Semaine de la Critique, séance spéciale). See more »

Soundtracks

Obsesion
Written by Pedro Flores Cordova
Performed by Benny Moré and Pedro Vargas
Copyright by Southern Publishing Co. Inc. Peermusic (Belgium) s. a.
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User Reviews

Flow
28 March 2013 | by See all my reviews

This is a very simple, heart-warming film. It's in Tati's vein of flat onedimensionality, which has roots in vaudeville and silent comedy. How this works is that we are placed at a larger viewing distance than usual. We know hardly anything about the protagonists, they are in love and love to dance basically. There is sparse dialogue, we won't know them by what they explain. There's rear projection in the driving scenes, a throwback to the artifice of old films, establishing a stage, a cartoonish-reduction, normally I find this off-putting.

But thankfully it is to very powerful effect. Overall the idea is to abstract to a canvas as blank as possible, sparse, a stage with just the people, so that instead of arguing with specific drama, we can register with unusual clarity simply the flow of feelings. It's emptying out.

Externally, that is their dance together. They're marvellous together, she a gangly Olive Oyl, he a gangly Mr. Hulot. It's not polished talent (deliberately so) like you might see in a normal dance film, but spontaneous joy, purely the desire to express feelings, shucks about form. It's a flawed dance, much better this way.

It's the internal flow that really elevates this though. It's as rich on the inside as it is plain on the outside. As silly or slight as some of the visual gags are, as visually unoriginal the flatness of stage, the lack of depth in the characters, so deep is the human connection between them. I was beaming with joy in the end.

Life can be trivial but happy, the film says. There is loss ahead, inserted as just the urge for death in the suicidal man. The loss as loss of memory as the burning down of the house, the man simply can't remember that he ever loved the love of his life. It's sweet and touching.

It's nearly transcendent by the end, a series of visual meditations on losing and finding again. The appeal? The larger viewing distance is not so that we can observe with distant cleverness, as in most Wes Anderson. Neither is it to 'ignore' the drama. It's so we can have enough empty space to unfold whole flows, without having the mind 'stop' at each turn. (someone like Bergman 'stops' the mind when he has you dwell in this or that psychological state)

So in this way, the film shows very clearly what causes suffering. It is what the film leaves out, that is dwelling with attachment on the particulars of misfortune. On the flipside of that is love as the dancing flow that liberates and redeems. This is simple, deep, a film to cherish.


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