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The Crack Magazine

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Bad Luck Banging Or Loony Porn

Director: Radu Jude

Stars: Katia Pascariu, Claudia Leremia, Stefan Steel, Marina Voica

A schoolteacher finds her reputation and career in deep trouble after her husband uploads their sex tape to the internet during the COVID epidemic in writer-director Radu Jude’s almost unquantifiable picture, a pornographic satirical absurdist sitcom meets meditation on hypocrisy and morality. It’s divided into three differing segments separated by hot pink intertitles. The first segment has the shamed schoolteacher Emi (Pascariu) wandering the streets of Bucharest, the camera frequently panning away from her to explore gaudy shopping centres and amusement arcades hinting at the theme of moral relativism to be explored in greater depth later. The second part is a tonal whiplash-inducing power point-style presentation and arch essay titled ‘A Short Dictionary of Anecdotes, Signs and Wonders’ which examines various notions of obscenity. In the concluding part (which Russian doll-style contains three alternate endings) Emi is summoned to a hearing with angry parents where she tries to make her case. Beneath the whacky veneer, which in turns looks to 60s screwball comedy, Buñuel’s bourgeoisie-baiting, and John Waters at his most cheekily profane, lies a sincere interrogation of morality and hypocrisy. It’s often very funny too.

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