Porumboiu’s ‘The Treasure’ at New York Film Festival

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“The Treasure” movie directed by Romanian director Cornel Porumboiu and awarded Un Certain Talent at the latest Cannes Festival edition is among the 26 films comprised in the Main Slate official selection of the 53rd New York Film Festival (NYFF, September 25 – October 11).

Award-winning films from Cannes will be presented to New York audiences for the first time, including Best Director Hou Hsiao-hsien’s The Assassin; Todd Haynes’s Carol, starring Best Actress winner Rooney Mara; Stéphane Brizé’s The Measure of a Man, starring Best Actor winner Vincent Lindon; Jury Prize winner The Lobster; Un Certain Regard Best Director Kiyoshi Kurosawa’s Journey to the Shore; and Un Certain Talent Prize winner Corneliu Porumboiu’s The Treasure.

“Corneliu Porumboiu’s (When Evening Falls on Bucharest or Metabolism, NYFF 2013) modern-day fable starts like an old Honeymooners episode with a get-rich-quick premise, gradually develops into a shaggy slapstick comedy, shifts gears into a hilariously dry delineation of the multiple layers of pure bureaucracy and paperwork drudgery, and ends in a new and altogether surprising key. Porumboiu is one of the subtlest artists in movies, and this is one of his wryest films, and his most magical,” reads the movie and director’s description at filmlinc.org.

According to the movie’s story, Costi (Cuzin Toma) leads a fairly quiet, unremarkable life with his wife and son. He’s a good provider, but he struggles to make ends meet. One evening there’s a knock at the door. It’s a stranger, a neighbor named Adrian (Adrian Purcarescu), with a business proposal: lend him some money to find a buried treasure in his grandparents’ backyard and they’ll split the proceeds. Is it a scam or a real treasure hunt?

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