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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 »
Seeing a way to reassert control over her adult son's life when he faces manslaughter charges, an affluent Romanian woman sets out on a campaign of emotional and social manipulation to keep him out of prison, navigating the waters of power, corruption and influence. Child's Pose is based on the sense of loss of parents who have to send their children away-physically and psychologically. The parent-child relationship is re-assessed through a son in his 30s that wants to escape from his mother, who in turn wants to keep her adult son by her side. The mother's character is quite familiar, but this film is unique in that the director delicately portrays how the controlling mother wants to deny that her son is destined to leave her by following the characters' emotional flows and gazing at their twisted desires. Luminita Gheorghiu turns in an extraordinary performance in playing a mother struggling to "save" her son. Heading to the conclusion, the film shows that the unhealthy mother-son ...Written by
In Italy the title was re-written with a typo in it ('Il Caso Kerenes' instead of the correct spelling of the family name Keneres) and the film was advertised on posters and published on DVD with this typo there. See more »
What did I do wrong?
Never mind now. I'm putting this on the table. You can say yes or no. You either let me call you when I feel like it, or it's nothing. And a suggestion. If it's hard, find a substitute. A dog, a lover, a hobby. People your age visit the Pyramids.
Other people my age have a normal relationship with their child. Parents find their fulfillment in their children. Everything they failed to accomplish, they achieve through their children.
So we're agreed.
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The Romanian film Pozitia copilului was shown in the U.S. with the title Child's Pose (2013). The movie was co-written and directed by Calin Peter Netzer.
Luminita Gheorghiu stars as Cornelia Keneres, a wealthy woman who dominates everyone with whom she comes into contact. Bogdan Dumitrache plays Barbu, her adult son, who clearly grew up under his mother's thumb, and has barely managed to achieve some measure of independence. However, Barbu has been involved in a fatal car accident in which he has killed a child. He's paralyzed with fear and regret, and that allows his mother to step back into his life to try to keep her son out of jail. (Barbu wasn't drunk when the accident occurred, but he was speeding and probably driving recklessly. We all know he's guilty.)
It's hard to have much sympathy for Barbu, who is sullen, uncommunicative, and somewhat strange. His intimate partner, Carmen, is about to leave him, because she can't tolerate his behavior any longer. (Carmen is played very well by the capable actor Ilinca Goia. She and Cornelia have an interesting--and intimate--conversation about Barbu. It's an extremely intense and unsettling scene.)
Of course, you could argue that Barbu is what he is because of his mother. It's a reasonable argument, although we can't be certain. In any event, Barbu, if left to his own devices, will go to jail. His mother defends against this possibility with all the ferocity of a mother tiger defending her cub.
The director makes it clear that in Romania--as in most places--money talks. Cornelia sets about to bribe the witness, bribe and bully the police, and manipulate the dead child's grieving parents. In fact, the only honest and untouchable person we meet is a young policewoman, and no one pays any attention to her.
This is a dark film about a dark situation. What makes it worth seeing is the outstanding performance by Luminita Gheorghiu as Cornelia. Gheorghiu was the star of the excellent film The Death of Mr. Lazarescu. In that movie she portrayed a working-class nurse, trying to save her patient and always facing closed doors. In this movie she is an elegant, sophisticated, architect, trampling over everyone to protect her son.
The parts are very, very different, but Gheorghiu has the talent to make us believe in her character in both roles. She is truly an incredible actor, and the film is worth seeing just to watch her on screen.
We saw this movie at the excellent Dryden Theatre at George Eastman House in Rochester, NY. It's primarily an intimate film, and will work very well on the small screen. In whatever format, it's worth finding and watching.
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