Stuff and Dough (Marfa si banii) (2008)
Average Rating: 6.6/10
Reviews Counted: 10
Fresh: 7 | Rotten: 3
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Critic Reviews: 4
Fresh: 4 | Rotten: 0
Average Rating: 3.5/5
User Ratings: 212
A twenty-something willing to walk the margins of the law for the right price finds that he's on a higher tightrope than he imagined in this compelling low-budget drama from Romania. Ovidiu (Alexandru Papadopol) is a young man with an entrepreneurial bent who is trying to launch a business selling snack food while still living in his parent's flat in Constanta. Needing cash to get his business off the ground, Ovidiu is more than willing to listen when he's approached by a local crime boss. It
Apr 23, 2008 Wide
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Like so many recent Romanian films, Stuff and Dough is tremendously well made on almost no budget, and blends the rhythms of ordinary life with a subtly ominous atmosphere and elements of thriller.
Making the minutiae of life hold continuous interest is no easy task, as demonstrated by [Cristi] Puiu's fledgling first feature, 2001's Stuff And Dough.
Though it is suspenseful, unnerving and agile in its techniques, Stuff and Dough has more than speed and danger on its mind.
Ultimately, like Lazarescu, Ovidiu becomes a mere cog in a social and economic system that would chew him up without a moment's consideration, and it's Puiu's goal to elevate this and other such stories above their banality and into the realm of myth.
Anyone prone to carsickness should bypass Stuff and Dough, unless they have an unquenchable desire to understand Romanian society or a keen interest in the career development of one of its best filmmakers.
Puiu's film is a day-in-the-life look at a group of young people living in a country still recovering from years of misrule and international neglect.
The American title doesn't do it justice, but Stuff and Dough is a small triumph.
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