The festival friendly Romanian New Wave of cinema is under threat, according to British newspaper The Guardian, which features local cinema on its recent film blog. The explosion of new films that followed Cristi Puiu’s The Death of Mr Lazarescu in 2005 has noticeably slowed, according to The Guardian.
The praise for Romanian cinema is unstinting, “aesthetically rigorous; serious-minded yet buoyed by a mordant sense of humour; it scraped its truths from the dingy fabric of everyday life, often covered in the residue of 42 years of communism,” reads The Guardian’s film blog. However, a lack of audiences in Romania is identified as a serious problem. Mentioning other Romanian directors, Corneliu Porumboiu, Cristian Mungiu and Radu Muntean, The Guardian quotes the low attendance figures for the films that have made such a splash on the festival circuit, suggesting the New Wave is more of a ripple in Romania.
But almost at the same time as The Guardian article was published, the recent Berlin Film Fest winner Poziţia copilului/Child’s Pose set box office records for its first weekend on release in Romania. Of course, one good weekend doesn’t mean Romanian film’s challenges are overcome, but it is at least a positive bit of news.
The Guardian also questions the lack of official support for Romanian cinema, a point that Romanian director Tudor Giurgiu made when talking to Romania Insider’s columnist Ioana Moldovan. He was critical of the National Centre for Cinema (Centrul Naţional al Cinematografiei – CNC) and described a situation wherein Romanian film essentially had to help itself, as there was little support from elsewhere. Read Romania Insider’s Interview: Of movies, battles and the two different worlds of Romanian film, with director Tudor Giurgiu
Read The Guardian’s Romania’s new wave could dry up if it doesn’t get home support.