Section: Spotlight Romania

Swamp City

Swamp City

Bogdan Puslenghea/Ovidiu Zimcea
RO, 2021, 105 Min

Punk, Electro, New Wave, Hardcore: The underground music scene in Timişoara in the late 1980s and the 1990s. Rebellion against the authorities and creative protest, but also clashes between right and left. Tales and anecdotes that were repeated in many cities in Eastern Europe immediately before and after the fall of the Wall. A journey through time, into the heart of two stirring decades.

A small fortune for Kraftwerk albums and Sex Pistols cassettes. A new sound that, of course, didn’t stop at the Iron Curtain. Punk & Co. from Yugoslavia spilled over into the south-west of Romania from nearby Novi Sad, which with the local “Exit” festival, founded in 2000, today remains an important independent music metropolis. With the help of eyewitness interviews and archive footage the film travels back to the period before the fall of the Wall, when underground music stood for individual rebellion, collective joy in experimentation and a search for identity. It united everyone who had the courage to fight for individual freedom by means of their lifestyle choices; and suffered harassment under the Ceauşescu regime as a result. After 1989 the scene became more diverse, remained creative and the personal space grew larger as the punk and wave underground evolved from a nail in the coffin of state socialism into a leading youth subculture.

Text: Bernd Buder

Weltspiegel Saal 2: Original version with English subtitles
Glad-House/Obenkino: Original version with English subtitles

Bogdan Pușlenghea, Ovidiu Zimcea
Bogdan Pușlenghea, Cristian Maghiar, Ovidiu Zimcea
Ovidiu Zimcea
Bogdan Pușlenghea, Ovidiu Zimcea
Ovidiu Zimcea
Bogdan Pușlenghea, Ovidiu Zimcea
Zimcea Ovidiu PFA
Bogdan Puslenghea/Ovidiu Zimcea

Bogdan Puslenghea/Ovidiu Zimcea - Bogdan Pușlenghea and Ovidiu Zimcea met with the occasion of their debut documentary, Swamp City. Bogdan has a short history writing poetry and Ovidiu is a film producer and composer. Both share a common interest in the underground music scene and decided to finish this feature documentary with no budget, necessary equipment or a well laid out plan, but armed with passion and enthusiasm.

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