16 years after the Revolution, a local television station in Bucharest invites several guests to share their moments of glory, as they stormed city hall chanting “down with Ceaucescu!” An alcoholic history teacher and a lonely retiree are forced to answer questions from dubious viewers.
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Flawlessly written, brilliantly economical gray comedy about the snowball effect of human pettiness and the chaos that ensues when we examine our most cherished illusions too closely. Fantastic performances by all three leads. Despite its extreme staticness, the camera always seems to be just where it should be. Great example of the knack of former Eastern Bloc filmmakers for making the bleak beautiful.
Porumboiu found here an extremely deft way to make an impossibly grand statement without getting the least bit heavy about it. Not heavy until the end. This thing is dry-ass funny wisdom until the culminating karate chop to the throats of its three stooges. And us. We are made to choke on our laughter. All laughter, since forever: to laugh from inside the nightmare of history because no nightmare is all nightmare.
A beautiful, brutally ironic film. Despite the revolution, some people still choose to interrogate and persecute others as though sitting on the old tribunals. Loved the beginning, when we see the position of women has not advanced. Graceful, honest remembrance at the end by the older fellow is perfect counterpart to all the inane political posturing that comes before.