Romanian film If I Want to Whistle, I Whistle released in the US, receives review in NY Times

Newsroom 05/01/2011 | 15:46

Romania’s official submission for the Best Foreign-Language Film at the 2011 Academy Awards, If I Want to Whistle, I Whistle, premieres in the US this Wednesday and will run in New York by January 18. The movie has been reviewed in the NY Times by A. O. Scott on January 4 and is described as “a study in confinement”.

The film is included in the same category as other recent and resonant Romanian films as Cristi Puiu’s “Stuff and Dough,” Cristian Mungiu’s “4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days” or Radu Muntean’s “Boogie”, since it depicts a similar kind of tragic realism, or as the critic refers to it, “European realism”.

Unprofessional actor George Pistereanu is also remarked, as his character Silviu is described as “tough and angry, but he also seems a little softer than some of his fellow prisoners”, as he is “at the end of a childhood that has hardened him without quite destroying his humanity”.

Director Florin Serban is regarded as “a dutiful student of cinematic naturalism, and “If I Want to Whistle,” his first feature, is a worthy example of the kind of ground-level, conscientious storytelling that fills up festival programs across Europe”.

The movie is however criticized for not maintaining some of its initial charm and consistency, “as the movie becomes more explosive — and more demanding of its cast — it loses some of the quiet, careful intensity that made Silviu’s situation worth attending to in the first place”. More of the review here.

 

Corina Dumitrescu

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