Senatorul melcilor (The Snails' Senator) (1995)




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This Romanian dramatic comedy offers metaphorical commentary on life after Ceausescu's reign as it tells the story of a rural community turned topsy-turvy in their mad quest for the snails a prominent senator has requested for his dinner. The trouble begins when a rather imposing, pompous senator comes to visit a small rural Romanian town for a ribbon-cutting ceremony for their new hydro-electric dam. After he finishes his speech, the senator is accosted by a Swiss film crew eager to interview him. The senator is inordinately concerned with presenting a positive image of Romania to the world at large and so when he learns that he and the journalists are to stay at the same villa, does everything he came to make sure that they see nothing scandalous. During the interview he casually mentions that he would like to have escargot for dinner the following night. To please him, the town fathers assign everyone in town to find the slimy delicacies; it is not an easy task. Meanwhile, a searching school teacher is accosted by two gypsies who try to rape her. Later the senator begs her not to press charges. The senator and his entourage then spend a restful day beside a lake oblivious to the increasing tensions between the desperately searching Romanians and the neighboring gypsies. Things escalate and a riot ensues, leaving the senator to scramble about trying to conceal the uprising. Finally he is served his snails and almost dies for the slippery critters turn out to be toxic. ~ Sandra Brennan, Rovi


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