It's the 22nd of December. Sixteen years have passed since the revolution, and in a small town Christmas is about to come. Piscoci, an old retired man is preparing for another Christmas ... See full summary »
An apartment kitchen: a man and a woman discuss Little Red Riding Hood, their voices hushed, mindful of waking the little girl sleeping next room. Waste land on the city outskirts: behind a... See full summary »
Cosmonaut Sergei Krikalev is the focus of this chronicle of life on the Russian space station Mir, showing what outer space is really like. In addition to the routine day-to-day activities ... See full summary »
Paul Hanganu loves two women. Adriana his wife and the mother of their daughter, the woman with whom he's shared the thrills of the past ten years, and Raluca the woman who has made him redefine himself. He has to leave one of them before Christmas.
Out of enthusiasm, a Militia soldier abandons his platoon and decides to fight for the cause of the Revolution. His Lieutenant and the rest of the crew look for him during the confused night of 22-23 December 1989.
Khodorkovsky, the richest Russian, challenges President Putin. A fight of the titans begins. Putin warns him. But Khodorkovsky comes back to Russia knowing that he will be imprisoned, once ... See full summary »
Mr. Lazarescu, a 63 year old lonely man feels sick and calls the ambulance. When it arrives, the paramedic decides he should take him to the hospital but once there they decide to send him ... See full summary »
Occident is a bittersweet comedy that focuses on the growing tendency of Eastern European youth to migrate west. When the amicable Luci (Alexandru Papadopol) and his beautiful lover Sorina ... See full summary »
During the summary trial that he and his wife were submitted to, Nicolae Ceausescu is reviewing his long reign in power: 1965-1989. From a formal point of view, The Autobiography of Nicolae Ceausescu proves that it is possible to only use existing images to yield films focused on recent history, yet with an epic vein similar to that of the historical fiction cinema. This is an eminently syntactic endeavor, where montage plays a twofold part: mise-en-scene, as it builds scenes that do not exist as such in the rushes, and classical editing, connecting scenes together. Written by
Cannes Film Festival
Andrei Ujica's film is an interesting mish-mash of documentary and archive material. Arranged progressively according to the timeline, we are treated to a very long and protracted story of Ceauseascu's life and role in the history of Romania. The film is done according to the very nice-sounding, but eventually problematic motto of "letting the archives and the evidence speak for itself". This proposition can achieve some moniker of success only among those, such as myself, who come from Romania, and know its history well, having studied it at the university level. But to foreigners or even young Romanians, lacking the context and the historical background, the film fails in documenting anything. An external viewer will not know who most of the people in the film are, what the background is for Ceausescu's reactions (such as his speech in 1968 in support of Czechoslovakia) as so forth. The film is also very long, almost three hours, and I admit that even I, who have a professional interest in the documentary material, had to give up half way through and resume later. Making an analogy, the film represents the difference between archive material and a book of history. The material, outside of its chronological arrangement, is raw, lacking subtitles, names etc. in many cases; a documentary based on the material painstakingly gathered by the director would have been much more interesting for the wider public. Still, the film is worth watching for a specialized audience, and shows never before seen material on a very important epoch and person in Romania's history.
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