Let sleeping dogs lie
„Roxanne” is director Valentin Hotea’s first feature that “tells the story of my generation, which lived for half of our lives under a totalitarian regime, while the other half is spent in a society in which people are still looking for their inner peace”, director Valentin Hotea said about his film.
Director: Valentin Hotea
Scriptwriters: Ileana Muntean, Valentin Hotea
Cast: Șerban Pavlu, Mihai Călin, Diana Dumbravă,Valeria Seciu, Adrian Vancică, Anghel Damian, Corina Moise
Produced by: Ada Solomon, Ioana Drăghici
Cinematography by: Alexandru Sterian
Film editing by: Eugen Kelemen
Category: feature film
Duration: 97 minutes
Territories: Available only in Romania
140,435 – Cinepub viewers
Bucharest, 2009. Twenty years after Romanian Revolution, TaviIonescu, a nice but quite immature guy for his late 30’s finds out from his Securitate (Romanian Secret Police) file that he could be the father of a son he didn’t know about. Starting his own secret investigation, Tavi is caught up by a complicated past that now comes to reveal ugly hidden truths, messing up his life and the lives of his close ones. For the first time in his life, Tavi is forced to take really mature decisions.
„Roxanne” is the first feature of director Vali Hotea’s who, together with Ileana Muntean shapes a realistic story which speaks about truths not told in their time. Once confessed, these truths from the past reshape the present.
The main character Tavi, played by Șerban Pavlu, is haunted by his past which left a mark that is alive: an almost 20 years old teenager. His journey as a father makes him a part of the illusion that he might make up for his mistake, gain time and make light in his life.
Tavi’s curiosity to find out about his Secret Police file changes the pace of the film giving it the air of a crime and investigation film, sprinkled with comedy here and there. „Roxanne” is a Romanian film in which the main character’s inclination for confrontation is easily noticeable: Tavi with Roxana, Tavi with his alleged son, Victor, Tavi with his usurping former colleague, Tavi with his ex-colleague that is still his friend.
He is in fact fighting his past, and his drama comes from his relationship with what was and what is and the tendency to let past dominate present, in order to blur out what is going on at present (an ill mother, a “stable” relationship, a small firm that is not really thriving).
An inspired choice in the collection of Romanian films online presented on Cinepub.ro.
“Vali Hotea’s first film, Roxanne, is a cinematographic soap opera (where „soap opera” is to be understood descriptively, not qualitatively) with an element of mystery.” (Andrei Gorzo – www.agenda.liternet.ro )
„Hotea and co-writer Ileana Muntean’s screenplay hinges on a romantic request for the song sent to Radio Free Europe in 1989, when the US-funded station broadcast out of Munich to Eastern Bloc countries. This request brings its sender Tavi to the attention of Ceausescu’s dreaded secret police, the Securitate, who open files on him and the song’s dedicatee, girlfriend Roxana. “Listen to the lyrics, baby!” Tavi exhorts – a rather odd choice of words, as the ditty famously concerns a prostitute being told she no longer has to “sell” her “body to the night…” (Neil Young – hollywoodreporter.com )
„Sorry, dude, problems with the new recruits.”
„She was flat as a table when I hired, but now…”
“Hey asshole, you should eat when you’re stressed.”
„Do you really think I can remember the stuff I said 20 years ago?”
„I feel like you’re pissing on me treating me like I’m a bank account.”
„Why are you staring at me like an idiot?”
- Anonimul International Film Festival, Sfântu Gheorghe – Romania, 2013
- Cinema Jove International Film Festival, Valencia – Spain
- Locarno International Film Festival – Switzerland, 2014
- Best First Feature Film (Valentin Hotea), Best Actress in A Supporting Role (Valeria Seciu), Gopo Awards, Romania 2014
- Golden Leopard – Filmmakers of the Present (Valentin Hotea), Locarno International Film Festival – Switzerland, 2014
- Golden Trailer Awards, Best foreign film poster – USA, 2014
- Cinepub premiere – “Roxanne” directed by Valentin Hotea, www.aarc.ro