At the recent Gopo Awards Gala, the Audience Award was given ex-aequo to the feature films #Selfie 69, directed by Cristina Iacob and to Two lottery tickets / Două lozuri directed by Paul Negoescu. It`s no surprise. The viewers were not invited to fill in forms in order to express their options, as it usually happens with other festivals. This time, they expressed their choice indirectly, so to speak, by the number of the tickets that were sold. From this point of view, in 2016, the two films ran shoulder to shoulder. By the end of the year, #Selfie 69 had 149,690 tickets sold, while Two Lottery Tickets had 133,022. It`s a very small difference due to the premiere dates: Cristina Iacob`s film was on screen three weeks earlier than the one made by Paul Negoescu.
This success is nothing but a new confirmation of what we had known for a long time: the Romanian viewer wants to laugh and the comedy is one of his favorite genres. The surprise is another one: this ex aequo situation tends to invalidate the preconception that the success is guaranteed only by the loud comedy, with lousy, Grobian, vulgar jokes and allusions to sex. The model doesn`t belong to us. It comes from Hollywood, with the countless comedies filled with farting, gagging, drooling, obscene gestures, etc, directed even by famous directors and starring top actors.
Competing with #Selfie 69, Two Lottery Tickets / Douălozuri proved from the title that it doesn`t need the omnipresent #, or a number alluding to sex in order to attract the audience and that all it needed was a hint of Caragiale. It also proved that three young men - who don`t curse, don`t chase chicks and despite all the troubles they have to face, they were and still are friends – are at least as interesting as three girls who make stupid bets and for whom chasing guys is the only “serious” concern.
As a matter of fact, from the previous #Selfie, the moral values of the protagonists were well settled: sex is better than school, theft is better than honest work, living from one day to the next is better than making a life plan. While the young men from Two Lottery Tickets are some poor fellows chased by bad luck; they don`t search the adventure (actually, it`s the adventure that bumps into them) or try to escape their modest environment; they merely want a decent living. If the girls from #Selfie 69 are meant to become the role models of their generation, the protagonists from Two Lottery Tickets can be our neighbours from the block of flats in the city outskirts. the fact that the audience loved them and appreciated their decent, good quality humour is a proof of matureness.
Translation: Iulia Necoara
#selfie69 film, cristina iacob, doua lozuri film 2015, gopo awards 2017, paul negoescu, premiile gopo 2017