When Corneliu Porumboiu
began making films in Romania just after the turn of the century, we knew what Romanian cinema was like — or, at least, we knew what the branch that came to be known as the Romanian New Wave was like. The movement, one of the most vital cinematic eruptions of the 2000s, was full of dark, minimalist, realist films that depicted, either overtly or implicitly, a society that was rotten to the core.
There’s some of that in Porumboiu’s “The Whistlers
,” which had its world premiere on Saturday at the Cannes Film Festival. The film is dark and it’s set in a world where you can’t trust anyone — but it’s also got John Wayne
and Alfred Hitchcock
homages and enough twists and turns to require a detailed scorecard.
” is no minimalist slice of realism, but an oversized, deliciously twisted ride that