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by Vlad Cioplea

”La Gomera” by Romanian director Corneliu Porumboiu, competing at Cannes

Romanian film director Corneliu Porumboiu’s movie „La Gomera” has been shortlisted in the competition of Cannes Film Festival this year, next to other movies signed by great filmmakers such as ”The Dead Don’t Die” (Jim Jarmusch) or ”Solor y Gloria” (Pedro Almodóvar).

Corneliu Porumboiu has shot his fifth fiction feature film, “La Gomera” in Bucharest, but also on the La Gomera island in Spain, with actors Agustí Villaronga, Cristóbal Pinto, Antonio Buíl and Kiko Correa starring.

Agustí Villaronga, awarded the Silver Bear for directing “El Mar” at Berlin Film Festival in 2000, also boasting three Goya trophies, was surprised that the Romanian director invited him to star in his movie. “I accepted because it was an adventure to me, and Corneliu is a unique filmmaker coming from a very interesting emerging cinema,” Villaronga said.

„Gomera” tells the story of Cristi, a police officer who arrives to the Spanish island to learn “El Silbo” language, a whistle communication form, particular to the region. His mission is to release Zsolt, a controversial businessman under arrest in Bucharest.

„Gomera”, Porumboiu’s first film shot abroad as well, also reunites some Romanian actors: Vlad Ivanov, Catrinel Menghia (Marlon), Rodica Lazăr and Sabin Tambrea.

El silbo (‘the whistle’), a whistled register of Spanish used by inhabitants of La Gomera and in the Canary Islands to communicate across the deep ravines and narrow valleys that radiate through the island, was declared as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity by UNESCO IN 2009.

„La Gomera” is a co-production 42 KM FILM- Les Films du Worso (France), Komplizen Film (Germany) and Arte Grand Accord.

In 2006, Corneliu Porumboiu won the debut prize Camera d’Or of the Cannes Festival, for “A fost sau n-a fost?/East of Bucharest” film, a comedy about how the anti-communist Revolution from 1989 had been experience in a countryside town. Porumboiu was also awarded the FIPRESCI Prize and the jury prize Un Certain Regard at Cannes for his movie “Polițist adjectiv/Police, adjective“.

The list of the films in the official selection of Cannes this year

  • DOLOR Y GLORIA (Douleur et Gloire / Pain and Glory) by Pedro Almodóvar
  • THE DEAD DON’T DIE by Jim Jarmusch (Ouverture)
  • IL TRADITORE (Le Traître / The Traitor) by Marco Bellocchio
  • NAN FANG CHE ZHAN DE JU HUI (The Wild Goose Lake) by Diao Yinan
  • GISAENGCHUNG (Parasite) by Bong Joon Ho
  • LE JEUNE AHMED (Young Ahmed) by Jean-Pierre Dardenne & Luc Dardenne
  • ROUBAIX, UNE LUMIÈRE (Oh Mercy!) by Arnaud Desplechin
  • ATLANTIQUE by Mati Diop
  • MATTHIAS ET MAXIME (Matthias and Maxime) by Xavier Dolan
  • LITTLE JOE by Jessica Hausner
  • SORRY WE MISSED YOU by Ken Loach
  • LES MISÉRABLES by Ladj Ly
  • A HIDDEN LIFE (Une vie cachée) by Terrence Malick
  • BACURAU by Kleber Mendonça Filho & Juliano Dornelles
  • LA GOMERA (The Whistlers) by Corneliu Porumboiu
  • FRANKIE by Ira Sachs
  • PORTRAIT DE LA JEUNE FILLE EN FEU by Céline Sciamma
  • IT MUST BE HEAVEN by Elia Suleiman
  • SIBYL by Justine Triet

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