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17 days to watch
What Is an Auteur?
406 Ratings

When Evening Falls on Bucharest or Metabolism

Când se lasă seara peste Bucureşti sau metabolism

Directed by Corneliu Porumboiu
Romania, France, 2013
  • Romanian
  • English
What Is an Auteur?


It’s the middle of a film shoot and Paul, the director, is having an affair with Alina, an actress playing a supporting role. With Alina’s last day on set imminent, Paul decides to rewrite the script in order to shoot a nude scene with her. But tomorrow is always another day…

Our take

Romanian New Wave director Corneliu Porumboiu turns his hilarious deadpan style to a behind-the-scenes look at moviemaking in Bucharest. This duet (or is it a duel?) between a director and actress is a clever self-critique about what matters in cinema, as well as a withering satire of masculine ego.

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All of this might sound a bit … chilly, perhaps. It is, but it isn’t. It’s a rigorous intellectual exercise, a lampoon of the Romanian film industry, a rather realistic look (actually) at how a director and an actress stumble their way through a scripted scene, questioning every piece of blocking, questioning the emotional motivations behind every gesture.
January 14, 2015
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Porumboiu’s mise en scène at once evinces both mastery and mischievousness. Rather than devolve into novelty or, worse yet, parody, When Evening Falls re-engages its own aesthetic constituents with meta-analytic verve, the alchemical addendum of its full title suggesting a self-sustaining cinematic schema that Porumboiu turns into a game of technical and temporal sleight of hand.
March 27, 2014
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…The strongest, subtlest movie I’ve seen so far in the NYFF Main Slate… Porumbiou, last seen here with “Police, Adjective” is a theoretically minded filmmaker with an extremely dry sense of humor. A movie about the making of an unmade movie, “When Evening Falls” is a film that you watch between the lines—or rather the shots, of which there are only 18.
October 04, 2013
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