“I’ve never found my own film style and I’m certain I will never ever find it.” This Radu Jude’s statement best describes the Romanian director’s versatility and his intention to make films without making plans for them. It was this approach that won him the title of one of the leading representatives of the acclaimed Romanian New Wave. This is also the reason why he will receive Maverick Award at this year’s edition of Motovun Film Festival, taking place from 30 July to 1 August. Jude definitely deserves the award given to authors who push the boundaries of cinema with their individual approach, free spirit and innovation. This is exactly what he did with every one of his films. In the opinion of many critics, the Romanian New Wave gave rise to a number of great films, but they often resemble each other. No such thing in Jude’s case! When it comes to style, his films stand out with their diversity in this exciting movement. His 2009 feature-length debut, The Happiest Girl in the World, is a brilliant satire of Romania’s fledgling consumer society. It was followed by the awarded black comedy Everybody in Our Family (2012), a naturalistic film about seeking justice within the family in an absurd way.
This summer, his 2014 film Bravo! (Aferim!) will be shown at our festival. This “Balkan western” of a sort deals with the sore subject of Romania’s past – the discrimination against its Roma population in the 19th century. Jude tackles another similar subject – the pogroms against Jews – in his hybrid mockumentary made two years ago, I Do Not Care If We Go Down in History as Barbarians. His last film, Uppercase Print, released this year and shown at Berlin Film Festival, also deals with the past. It is a docudrama about a teenager who writes graffiti against Nicolae Ceaușescu’s dictatorial regime. As for our festival jury this year, it is made up of quite impressive figures of the national cinema: Lana Barić, Nina Violić and Goran Bogdan. After a series of great roles in stage and film productions, Lana Barić now presents herself as the screenwriter of the new film by Danilo Šerbedžija, Tereza37. She also appears in it. Nina Violić has embarked on the same road. Her short-film debut as a director and screenwriter, Janje, was shown in Motovun last summer. She is currently working on her feature-length debut. Goran Bogdan is one of our most popular actors and we often get to see him in intriguing roles in international productions. All three of them are old friends of Motovun Film Festival and their work and presence will fit perfectly on this year’s celebration of life and creativity on our Film Hill.
Photo: © Mihai Chitu / Big World Pictures: Radu Jude on set of Aferim!