Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Eu când vreau să fluier, fluier (If I Want to Whistle, I Whistle)

Truly amazing film that takes us slowly into an intense study on human reactions to impotence, inability to stop something and how far can we go trying. Took me a while but finally was able to see Florin Serban's 2010 highly acclaimed feature film debut that won the 2010 Berlinale Jury Grand Prix, was Romania submission to Oscar in 2011, and collected many honors in the fest circuit and awards season. Some things are worth waiting for and definitively this film was one of them.

Set in a youth-reformatory tells the story of Silviu (George Pistereanu) last days of sentence where after years of being an exemplary recluse starts to transgress the prison rules thanks to learning that his mother came back from Italy to take his younger brother back with her. Film is set in a prison but in my opinion this is not a prison movie at all, as I believe is used because is a setting that perfectly allows to show a microcosm where due to forceful confinement naturally facilitates impossibilities to do what you wish to do. And that's what exactly happens in film, as Silviu after unsuccessfully trying reasonable ways to help him stop his mother, has to resort to extreme measures.

It's a simple story that becomes outstanding thanks to absolutely impressive performance by Pistereanu and the mind-blowing Serban's abilities as a filmmaker and storyteller. Film is so good that is one of the few films that I have seen that very successfully translated a play to the big screen, as film is based on the stage play with the same name by Andreea Valean.

Film gloriously closes with an open end where you have to imagine what comes next, was Silviu successful? Did he stopped his mother? Was everything worth it? It's up to you to close this story with a classical happy ending or opt for a different outcome. I simply love when filmmakers leave to us viewers the opportunity to close the story, especially after a very intense, very emotional ride. Fantastic.

I know that film is not for general audiences as has a very slow pace, has many silences, actors express what happens more with face and body expressions than words and yes, nothing is spelled-out in here, you have to get inside the movie to highly enjoy the ride. Almost my perfect kind of movie as the only thing missing was to be visually stunning, but in this case I forgive filmmaker as beauty definitively is something that could not be present in this film and story. This is glorious raw realism.

If you haven't seen film yet, strongly suggest you do so if you enjoy great Romanian new wave cinema.


Watch trailer @MOC

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