The Escape/Q.E.D.

Andrei Gruzsniczki's tense, morally thorny The Escape shows that the ethical tangles of Communist Romania don’t look altogether unfamiliar. Two academics—one a blacklisted nerd who’s refused to join the Party, one a Party-affiliated scientist whose husband has disgraced her by defecting—trying to smuggle a paper out of the country to be published in the West. But the Romanian security service, the Securitate, relentlessly exploits every chance to turn dissidents against one another, leading to a society rife with betrayal and loneliness. If I’m making it sound too grim, I’m not doing justice to Gruzsniczki’s eye for funny absurdity in the apparatus of state tyranny, or to Vivi Dragan Vasile’s poetic black-and-white cinematography.

by Joule Zelman
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Andrei Gruzsniczki