A wedding and many more funerals
Join the colourful world of the 50s Romanian village, meet characters reminding you of Fellini’s and Kusturica’s films, live in the circus world, together with pygmy clowns, discover the eccentric village people, in a film nominated for eight Gopo awards in 2009, including for Best Script (Adrian Lustig, HorațiuMălăele), Best Actor (Alexandru Potocean), Best Actress (Meda Victor) and Best Cinematography (Vivi Drăgan Vasile).
Director: Horațiu Mălăele
Scriptwriters: Adrian Lustig, Horațiu Mălăele
Cast: Meda Victor, Alexandru Potocean, Valentin Teodosiu, Alexandru Bindea, Tudorel Filimon, Nicolae Urs, Luminița Gheorghiu, Dan Condurache, Doru Ana, Șerban Pavlu, George Mihăiță, Tamara Buciuceanu-Botez, Victor Rebengiuc
Produced by: Vlad Păunescu
Cinematography by: Vivi Drăgan Vasile
Film editing by: Cristian Nicolescu
Category: feature film
Genre: comedy, drama, romance
Duration: 87 minutes
78,886 – Cinepub viewers
When the death of Stalin is announced, national mourning is declared for 7 days and all public celebrations are forbidden, which is not great news for the dozens of people gathered to participate at a wedding in a Romanian village: no less than four pigs and two veals have been cut for this event, and the food cannot be kept for such a long time. The father-in-law finds the solution: the windows are covered with thick curtains, the bottles and glasses are wrapped in rags, the kids have their mouths bound to keep silent, the musicians mime the music and all the guests are whispering.
“I think humanity owes the present explanations, be they cinematographic, about the wounds inflicted on the past’s body, at least in order to clear off wonder and bewilderment, so that the “sleep of reason” should no longer produce such monstrous situations. I want to make a film that speaks to the world about love, with romanticism and tenderness in a space that creates eternity. I want to make a film that can speak to the world about dictatorship and its consequences for the community and the family. It will be a film about life, death and Truth. It will be a film with a lot of humour” (Horațiu Mălăele, interview on the official site of the film).
All the things mentioned by the director in this „mission statement” do indeed catch shape in the film in various degrees and nuances, but the most important aspect is that they create a metaphor together. „Silent Wedding” is a Romanian film directed by one of the most loved and most successful Romanian actors, a film that chooses to speak about the horrors of the communist beginnings in the form of a complete metaphor. The „frame” of the story follows the convention of realism: a few reporters are in search of picturesque places in the country, unknown places, which have a sensational, yet undiscovered story.
On this realistic canvas (sometimes undermined by the „deconstruction” of the sensational news report style), one of the most metaphorical films (from the point of view if conception and at the visual level) is embroidered. The director seems to have wanted to counterbalance the terrible situation of the wedding drowned in silence and then in blood, through a cinematographic discourse that says Beauty prevails. Each sequence is carefully worked on, refined to the last detail, and the air of theatricality adds to the type of aesthetics Horațiu Mălăele built his film on. The awards for cinematography, for hairstyle and makeup, the nomination for art direction come to support and reward the directorial intention.
The selection of this film by Cinepub, the Romanian films online platform, gives the viewer the possibility to watch a film in which the aesthetics competes with realism and wins.
“Essentially, Silent Wedding is a film with marginalised people – a category including not only the dwarves (Sile and his “half”) or “mad people” (Coriolan and Smaranda), but the entire community, dispensable for the unmerciful history. The cast includes so many well-known actors (from the theatre, cinema and/or television), used in difficult collective scenes, that the director’s merits are incontestable.” (Mihai Fulger – aarc.ro )
“What’s normal these days?”
“I used to be the slut of the village!”
“Mayor, tell me what happened here.”
“Why aren’t you straight with her? If you’re already involved with her, marry her!”
“Threaten,scare them, or I’ll skin you alive!”
“Hold on! I’ll marry her!”
“No laughing, no football matches, no weddings, no funerals.”
“Fair play and good luck to you, too!”
- Transylvania International Film Festival (TIFF) – Romania, 2008
- Best Script (Adrian Lustig, Horațiu Mălăele), Best Actor (Alexandru Potocean), Best Actress (Meda Victor), Best Cinematography (Vivi Drăgan Vasile), Best Editing (Cristian Nicolescu), Best Set Design (Mihnea Mihăilescu), Best Costumes (Oana Păunescu), Gopo Awards – Romania, 2009
- Best Cinematography (Vivi Drăgan Vasile),„Opera Prima” Award (Horațiu Mălăele) and Best Sound Editing and Music (Tiberiu Borcoman și Alexandru Andrieș), The Romanian Film Union (UCIN) – Romania, 2008
- Best Make-up and Hairstyling (Dana Roșeanu and Ioana Ioniță), Gopo Awards – Romania, 2009