Andrei Cohn soon to complete communist drama Arrest
by Ştefan Dobroiu
- The story centres on the encounter between an average man and his torturer
Three years after his first feature, Back Home [+see also:
interview: Andrei Cohn
interview: Andrei Cohn
film profile], competed in the official competition of the Sarajevo International Film Festival, Romanian director Andrei Cohn is currently in post-production with his second feature, Arrest [+see also:
film profile], which explores the abusive past of communist Romania. The film is being produced by Anca Puiu for Mandragora, and post-production is expected to end in February.
The screenplay, written by Cohn, is set in the 1980s and centres on Dinu (Alexandru Papadopol, also the lead in Back Home), an average man who spends a blissful day at the seaside with his wife (Diana Vladu) and their children. In stark contrast, one day later, we see Dinu in a cell waiting to be questioned by the communist police. With him in the cell is another man, Vali (Iulian Postelnicu, best known as the mysterious villain in Radu Muntean’s One Floor Below [+see also:
interview: Radu Muntean
film profile]), and soon we find out that he is the protagonist’s torturer, whose only job is to “work” Dinu so that he tells the investigators the truth.
The film’s budget amounts to approximately €334,000. The Romanian National Film Centre supported the production with approximately €90,000. Arrest was shot for two days on location at the Romanian seaside last September, and then on a sound stage in the Bucharest Film Studios. Andrei Butică was the director of photography.
On what compelled him to write the story, Cohn says that the one particular aspect of communism that he was most preoccupied with over the years was “this possibility of being unexpectedly teleported from your universe to an abusive one, for no apparent reason. I have always asked myself how I would manage in this situation.” The writer-director describes his film as an “involuntary parable of what Romanian communism was. It is about a victim, a torturer and the cell in which the two characters re-write the evolution of Romanian society from the underestimation of communism [in the 1940s] to its complete acceptance.”
Arrest is expected to be released domestically in the second half of 2019.
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