THE TREASURE (COMOARA)
AFI FEST stalwart Corneliu Porumboiu (POLICE, ADJECTIVE) returns with his latest tale of present–day Romanians still in the grip of their country's politically tumultuous history. In this utterly deadpan comedy, Adrian implores his neighbor, family man Costi, to join him on a search for valuable coins he believes his grandfather buried at his family's country estate during World War II. Both men are financially struggling, and the get–rich–quick allure of the plan proves too tempting. However, the treasure hunt, envisioned as a Robin Hood–inspired adventure, gradually transforms into a mundane trek through a vast backyard, entirely dependent on the constant squawking of a cumbersome metal detector. Hours of digging, some meddling policemen and the ever–looming specter of Romania's Communist past all guide Porumboiu's masterfully controlled vision to a fascinating finale that has been compared to Frank Capra but contains more of a subversively critical bite. — Mike Dougherty
Preceding short: FRANKENSTEIN'S BRIDE.
Corneliu Porumboiu was born in 1975 in Vaslui, Romania. His incisive and deadpan-comedic films have made him a favorite at AFI FEST. His latest film, THE TREASURE, follows his 12:08 EAST OF BUCHAREST; POLICE, ADJECTIVE; and WHEN EVENING FALLS ON BUCHAREST OR METABOLISM in playing the festival.