Aferim!

2015 [ROMANIAN]

Adventure / Comedy / Drama / History / Western

0
IMDb Rating 7.6 10 6473

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Synopsis


Uploaded By: FREEMAN
March 26, 2021 at 04:11 PM

Director

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720p.BLU
968.66 MB
1280*538
rum 2.0
NR
24 fps
1 hr 45 min
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Movie Reviews

Reviewed by florin_razvan19-317-141030 10 / 10

An exceptional, deeply intelligent gaze at a key historical period, with significant ramifications for today.

A runaway gypsy slave in early 19th-century Wallachia is hunted down by a constable and his son in Radu Jude's most accomplished and original feature yet, "Aferim!" In his two previous films, Jude's leitmotif was people's inhumanity to one another, full of power games and humiliations. Here he stays true to the theme, using this black-and-white oater to trace the roots of Romanian society's less positive characteristics. While its tone is occasionally overly strident, "Aferim!" is an exceptional, deeply intelligent gaze into a key historical period, done with wit as well as anger.

"Aferim!" is an Ottoman Turkish expression meaning "bravo!," a word used with deep irony in the film but one that can equally be directed, without any irony, at the director. A great deal of the freshness lies in the way Jude dispenses with traditional historical-film trappings even while cleaving to the classic structure of fugitive-hunting Westerns.There's nothing staid or prettified here, and while a significant amount of background research is on show, the helmer uses it to re-create an atmosphere rather than a specific, sacrosanct event.

Reviewed by boggdogg 10 / 10

Lost in translation

I think it's almost impossible for someone who is not a Romanian speaker to really get most of the dialog in this movie. There are a lot of archaic words and expressions from funny to sad or contemplative that are for sure lost in translation. I am a Romanian, born and raised in this country, and I didn't understand 30-35 % of the words. I have to see it again with subtitles on to fully appreciate the mesmerizing Wallachian dialect. It's a great movie nonetheless, with beautiful cinematography and solid performances from the actors, so I strongly recommend it to anyone who wants to see how life was 200 years ago in Romania.

Reviewed by Radu_A 10 / 10

Easily best Romanian film of the decade

I'm of Romanian descent, so I'm not entirely objective on this, but as far as film can actually change perceptions of how we see the world around us, "Aferim" is without a doubt an unmatched masterpiece and an absolute first in many ways.

It's a rare Romanian historical drama set before the 20th century (with the exception of historical biopics of communist era). It's thematically a Western (or Eastern), since it involves a long journey on horseback, strongly and intentionally recalling "The Searchers". Most importantly, it's an endless series of interchanges with representatives of society back then, by which virtually every social problem of the present day is touched.

The genius of this film is that it follows a timeline, through which the spectator is at times bemused and at times horrified by the behavior of the main protagonist, a constable charged with capturing a runaway slave accompanied by his inept son. In a thoroughly realistic way unlike any historical film I have ever seen, we see him treat priests and nobles with respect and peasants and Roma with indifferent cruelty. Sometimes he shows a conscience, as when bonding with his son or asking the slave owner for clemency upon returning him. Sometimes he is shockingly ruthless, like when he sells a Rom boy they also picked up to a passing noble because he wants to afford drinking and whoring.

Not only is this the first portrayal of slavery in Romania, a topic not taught in schools and therefore quite controversial. It is a completely naturalistic portrayal as well, unlike any emotionally charged tales out of Hollywood. It easily beats the credibility of "12 Years a Slave", because Jude maintains a sardonic, matter-of-fact narrative instead of drenching his film in moral lessons about the nature of good and evil. Teodor Corban delivers his cop character as a product of his times, with no judgment or exoneration of his actions. If there is one slight weakness at all, it's that the dialogues are sometimes very fast and probably very difficult to translate. As a Romanian raised abroad, I found myself guessing at roughly half of the vocabulary, and even though I got most of the irony, I would not know how to explain it to foreigners and keep the meaning intact.

"Aferim!" means "Excellent!" as a Turkish exclamation (recalling that Wallachia at he time was a vassal to the Ottoman Empire - when the constable sends a Turkish carriage the wrong way to spite the Turks, this is how his son praises him. So the title perfectly describes the film in one word - a tale of a time when the ignorant hated everyone else, not realizing how similar they were. When the privileged few treated the abject poor as mere objects, aided by the apathy of commoners, who could not imagine any alternative. This horror mixed with irony resonated strongly with audiences, and would certainly justify a foreign language Oscar next year.

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