The Las Palmas de Gran Canaria International Film Festival focuses its attention in 2018 on one of new Romanian cinema’s most prominent filmmakers: Radu Jude. The director, who will also be at the festival as a member of the international jury, will take part from Saturday April 7 on in the introduction of the features included in the film series Radu Jude 4 ½ + 4, which has gathered four features and a short film by the author of Aferim! and other four films by some filmmakers that have deeply influenced his work: Yervant Gianikian and Angela Ricci Lucchi, Lucian Pintilie, Jean-Luc Godard and Yasujiro Ozu.
Jude has given this brief interview to Charlotte Pavard for the Festival.
What moved your choice of the four movies which complete your cycle for the Festival Internacional de cine de Las Palmas?
There is a relationship with my work, sometimes a distant one. I will give one example, Lucian Pintilie’s film, An Unforgettable Summer. The film is very important because it is one of the rare cases where a critical view regarding the past of Romania was expressed in cinema. It is a great film apart from that, with a wonderful presence of Kristin Scott Thomas, with a brilliant mise-en-scene, but for me the way the film shows the past of Romania is still the most important element, even more important now in a Europe where nationalism seems to come back in force. I really hope people from Las Palmas will come to see this film.
Is Jean-Luc Godard important for you, are you especially fond of French cinema?
Godard is the most important filmmaker working today, I believe. And a model for me and for everyone interested in filmmaking, I think.
In your last movie / documentary, The Dead Nation, you chose to make use of the collage technique, could you explain why you made this choice?
The main reason was to think about how images represent the world and to create a kind of tension between what the images show and what they conceal. And, because I was preparing my new film and did a lot of historical research, I stumbled on the elements that compose this film – mainly, a collection of photographs, a diary of a Jewish doctor from the 30’s and 40’s and some propaganda materials. I discovered that by putting together these elements new meaning arises and also new problems.
A whole generation of strong filmmakers is performing on the Romanian scene. What place would take your cinema in this New Wave of the last 15 years?
Well, it is not for me to answer this, as I cannot judge my own work. I am simply trying to use cinema in order to reflect and express the thoughts I might have to an audience. The rest, I don’t care.
What will be your next project?
My next film is called “I Do Not Care If We Go Down in History as Barbarians” and is a cinematic reflection on the past, especially on the (lack of) memory of the massacres that the Romanian army committed in 1941 on the Eastern Front.
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