The first screening for the 2010 season of Westport Film Club will hit the silver screen on Wednesday February 3 at 8.45pm at Westport Cineplex.
Kicking off the season will be Cristian Mingiu’s The Tales from the Golden Age. This film from the director of 4 Months, 3 Weeks and 2 Days reflects on the vagaries of life in Ceausescu’s Romania. Choice propaganda footage sets up this vividly persuasive picture of a society caught between graft and anxiety, where the seemingly inexhaustible ingenuity deployed in getting round the restrictions of state control is matched by an ever-present dread of the consequences of getting caught out.
Needless to say, there’s much wry fun to be had at the expense of the bureaucrats, as panic reigns in a rural community being inspected to see if they’ll pass muster for a big-wig’s motorcade, and a party photographer faces meltdown when his picture of Giscard D’Estaing’s official visit makes the Frenchman seem more presidential than their own dear leader. Although the vignette of a lovelorn lorry driver seeking to win an inn-keeper’s heart by smuggling her illicit eggs treats the era of food shortages with a bittersweet twinge, there’s more laughter in the episode where a suburban family face the challenge of slaughtering a pig without alerting their apartment block neighbours – and indeed in the delightful closing story, which goes to show that you can sell air for a profit if you’re clever enough.