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Cristi (Dragos Bucur) is on one helluva boring stakeout in Romanian black comedy

POLICE, ADJECTIVE (Corneliu Porumboiu, 2009)
Film Society of Lincoln Center
Elinor Bunin Munroe Film Center, Francesca Beale Theater
144 West 65th St. between Broadway & Amsterdam Ave.
Monday, December 2, 3:00
Series runs November 29 - December 4

The first half of Corneliu Porumboiu’s Police, Adjective is as dreadfully boring as Detective Cristi’s (Dragos Bucur) assignment, tailing a student, Victor (Radu Costin), who enjoys a joint with two of his friends every day after school. While Cristi wants to nail the kid’s supplier, the cop’s boss has him on a tight deadline, insisting he arrest Victor if the investigation continues to go nowhere, but Cristi strongly disagrees with putting the teenager away for up to seven years for a crime he believes will soon be abolished by the government. However, the film picks up considerably as Cristi seeks help from various contacts, getting caught up in red tape and public servants who would really rather not be bothered. And when he get called in by the chief (Vlad Ivanov from 4 Months, 3 Weeks, and 2 Days) and gets a long lecture in linguistics, well, you won’t be able to control yourself from laughing out loud. Porumboiu keeps the pace very slow and very steady, but hang in there, because the end is a riot. Police, Adjective, which won the Un Certain Regard Jury Prize at the Cannes Film Festival, screened at the New York Film Festival and at MoMA as part of the “Contenders, 2009,” series, and was Romania’s official entry for the Foreign Language Film Academy Award, is being shown December 2 at 3:00 at the Francesca Beale Theater as part of the Film Society of Lincoln Center series “Making Waves: New Romanian Cinema 2013,” which runs November 29 to December 3 and consists of works dating from 1962 to 2013 by such directors as Calin Peter Netzer, Nae Caranfil, Tom Wilson, Adrian Sitaru, Laura Capatana-Juller, Dan Pita, and Mircea Veroiul. Also on the schedule are the rest of Porumboiu’s films, including 12:08 East of Bucharest, the shorts trio Liviu’s Dream, A Trip to the City, and Gone with the Wine, and his latest, the closing-night selection When Evening Falls on Bucharest or Metabolism, which is being presented December 3 at 6:00 and will be followed by a Q&A with the director.

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