Movie #66 12:08 East of Bucharest
(2006, Romania, d. Corneliu Porumboiu)
Another film belonging to the New Wave of Romanian cinema, 12:08 is an understanding and subtle film about the nuances and acceptances of history. The film’s central question, as posed by the news anchor protagonist (played by Teodor Corban) is: Was there ever a revolution that occurred in their little Romanian town before the fall of communism on December 22, 1989? On this news show are two eclectic guests: a drunkard and a hopeless old man, both who say they were present during the revolution. Most of the film takes place during the news program in which phone callers argue with the guests and continually discredit every one, including the anchor. However, as humorous as it is, the film does raise a beautiful point. As relevant as the question is to the Romanian town, at one point near the end, a caller phones in simply to tell everyone it’s snowing outside, raising the point that regardless of the details, history happened – and it was made by heroes and cowards, alike. There’s no point arguing over it.