California Dreamin' (Nesfarsit) (Endless)
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California Dreamin' (Nesfarsit) (Endless)
Romanian director Cristian Nemescu's comedy California Dreamin' (aka Nesfarsit, 2007) unfolds against the backdrop of the Kosovo War, circa 1999. A NATO train rolls through a Romanian hamlet, transporting a plethora of weapons across the country -- without official documents, and equipped only with the verbal consent of the Romanian authorities. The transport thus grows intensely vulnerable to the locals -- particularly the corrupt head of the railway station, who moonlights as a mobster and promptly decides to interfere with the shipment. ~ Nathan Southern, Rovi

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 89%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"It could use a trim, but only rarely does it strain for effect, and, for a young man, Nemescu was uncannily versed in the emotions of middle age."
‑ Anthony Lane, New Yorker
"A deft fable that maps global concerns onto a local story with confidence and wit."
‑ Ben Walters, Time Out New York
"A sharp-edged socio-political satire that clearly lets Americans know how they are viewed abroad by foreigners."
‑ Dennis Schwartz, Ozus' World Movie Reviews
"California Dreamin' mostly observes a series of complicated personal interactions, its point helped along by Doiaru's speeches concerning the ongoing American failure even to try to comprehend the populations it invades, assimilates, abuses, and buys off."
‑ Cynthia Fuchs, PopMatters
"The film plays out with an impressive singularity of purpose."
‑ Andrew Schenker, Slant Magazine
"For now at least, we have to be content with this pleasing comedy in search of an editor."
‑ V.A. Musetto, New York Post
"At its present length it sprawls shamelessly in terms of the ultimate futility of its narrative."
‑ Andrew Sarris, New York Observer
"A solid film that reminds us of how America is perceived throughout the world, and what a loss it was that director Nemescu died so young."
‑ James Plath, Movie Metropolis
""Occasionally drags and slightly overstays its welcome, but still it's mostly intriguing and intelligent."
‑ Avi Offer, NYC Movie Guru
"What surprises and delights is how complete the work feels, finished in every way aesthetically and thematically, any longueurs or asides entirely part of Nemescu's indelible emotional tapestry."
‑ Keith Uhlich, House Next Door
"California Dreamin' is a rambunctious, closely observed comedy of cultural collision."
‑ A.O. Scott, New York Times
"Nemescu's promising young voice will be sorely missed, not only in Romanian cinema but also on the international scene."
‑ Wally Hammond, Time Out
"... part goofy village comedy, part geopolitical allegory, part satire."
‑ Sean Axmaker,
"Another rewarding dark satire from Romania, the feature debut of a director who died tragically young."
‑ Eric Monder, Film Journal International
"[It] could do with some editing (indeed, the parenthetical in the title refers to its unshaped state), but there's just as little doubt that Nemescu's work is pretty worthy as is."
‑ Jeremy Heilman,
More reviews for California Dreamin' (Nesfarsit) (Endless) on Rotten Tomatoes

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