‘R.M.N.’ Review: A Bleak Diagnosis for Romania

Published: April 27, 2023

Deep into “R.M.N.,” an anatomy of the human situation, this powerhouse of a film will get deeper, creepier and unnervingly acquainted. At that time, dozens of residents in a Romanian village have gathered for an impromptu city corridor. Now, crammed collectively, the attendees — lovers, household, buddies and neighbors whom you’ve come to know and typically like — clamorously voice their points with some newly arrived overseas employees. The townspeople are suspicious, resentful, ridiculous and violently, explosively bigoted; they’re additionally terrifying.

I’ve known as the film an anatomy, however this scene is extra of an post-mortem. In some 15 tour-de-force, uninterrupted minutes, the writer-director Cristian Mungiu exposes the absurdity of this physique politic, of those so-called involved residents, laying naked their grievances, prejudices and tribal affiliations. Some attendees converse (and shout) in Romanian, others in Hungarian. A French customer — a conservationist for an NGO and a symbolic consultant of the European Union — bleats a couple of conciliating sentiments however is scornfully shut down. The folks have spoken and never on behalf of peace, reconciliation, democracy and human rights.

That’s unsurprising and bleak. But Mungiu’s contact is so deft and his filmmaking so enlivening, and the villagers so laughable (if additionally scary!), that you simply by no means really feel dragged down or punished by the ugliness. Mungiu — a towering determine within the Romanian New Wave — is a tricky, unsparing filmmaker, however he isn’t a scold or didact, the sort who delivers grindingly apparent life classes in regards to the horrors of different folks. He’s involved in what makes human beings tick and why. But he’s a skeptic, not a cynic, and his method is diagnostic moderately than moralizing, which provides you room to fulfill his work in your phrases.

“R.M.N.” is about in movement by Matthias (Marin Grigore), a hulking brute who stalks the film like a risk. After a quick prologue, it opens with him working in a meat-processing plant in Germany. There, amid the baaing of soon-to-be-butchered sheep, he proves he’s an apex predator by viciously head-butting a hectoring supervisor who sneeringly refers to him as a Gypsy. As different employees increase the alarm, he flees after which catches a trip again to his Transylvania city, a village flanked by mountains that’s some 250 miles from Bucharest. He strikes again in together with his cautious spouse and younger son, and pursues and beds a former lover.

Source web site: www.nytimes.com